US Succeeds in Next Flight Test of Advanced Missile Defense Interceptor
The U.S. Navy and Missile Defense Agency (MDA) conducted the second successful flight test of the Raytheon Company (NYSE: RTN) Standard Missile-3 Block IIA.
During the Controlled Test Vehicle-02 flight test, an SM-3 Block IIA was launched from a MK 41 launcher located at the U.S. Navy's Point Mugu Sea Range on Saint Nicolas Island in California . A target intercept was not included in the testing scenario.
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The mission evaluated the SM-3 Block IIA's kinetic warhead and divert and attitude control system functionality, in addition to nosecone performance, steering control section function, booster separation, and second and third stage rocket motor separation.
"The SM-3 Block IIA program continues to reflect the MDA's commitment to maturing this capability for the defense of our nation, deployed forces, and our allies abroad," said Dr. Taylor W. Lawrence , Raytheon Missile Systems president. "The success of this test keeps the program on track for deployment at sea and ashore in the 2018 timeframe."
The interceptor's more capable kill vehicle searches, discriminates, acquires, and tracks the threat before maneuvering to collide with the target. It simultaneously provides kill assessment data back to the ship. The sophisticated kill vehicle, along with larger rocket motors, allows SM-3 Block IIA to engage threats sooner and protect larger regions from short- to intermediate-range ballistic missile threats.
The next live-fire test of the SM-3 Block IIA is planned in 2016. The missile will be fired from a U.S. Navy warship, and the test is planned to include an intercept of a ballistic missile target.
About the Standard Missile-3
SM-3s destroy incoming ballistic missile threats in space using nothing more than sheer impact equivalent to a 10-ton truck traveling at 600 mph.
- More than 230 SM-3s have been delivered to date.
- SM-3 Block IB is deployed at sea and will be deployed ashore by end of 2015 in Romania.
- SM-3 Block IIA is on track for deployment at sea and ashore in 2018 timeframe.
Source : Raytheon Corporation (NYSE: RTN) - view original press release