newest SM-3 intercepts medium-range ballistic missile target at highest
altitude to date
update: Pre-mission analysis indicated this would be the highest intercept
to date, but post-mission data shows the intercept was slightly lower
than a prior mission. Regardless of intercept altitude, the system adjusted
to the conditions it encountered to ensure the SM-3 intercepted the
In a Missile Defense Agency test, the U.S. Navy fired a Standard Missile-3
Block IB, made by Raytheon Company (NYSE: RTN), from the USS Lake Erie.
The SM-3 eliminated the medium-range ballistic missile (MRBM) target
at the highest altitude of any test to date.
"The next-generation SM-3 proved itself against a medium-range
ballistic missile target at the highest altitude of any previous test.
We remain on track to deliver this critical capability in time for a
2015 deployment in support of global combatant command requirements,
and specifically phase two of the European Phased Adaptive Approach,"
said Dr. Taylor Lawrence, president of Raytheon Missile Systems.
The test was the 26th successful intercept for the SM-3 program and
the fifth back-to-back successful test of the next-generation SM-3 Block
IB guided missile.
A SM-3 Launches from USS Lake Erie during a test
(File Picture: US Navy)
highest intercept to date is a result of increasing the complexity of
the testing scenarios, reflecting what we would see in an operational
environment," said Dr. Mitch Stevison, Raytheon Missile Systems'
SM-3 program director. "The missile continues to perform, increasing
confidence in the SM-3 Block IB's readiness for production."
PACIFIC OCEAN (May 15, 2013) A Standard Missile-3 (SM-3) Block 1B interceptor
missile is launched from the guided-missile cruiser USS Lake Erie (CG
70) during a Missile Defense Agency and U.S. Navy test in the mid-Pacific.
The SM-3 Block 1B successfully intercepted a target missile that had
been launched from the Pacific Missile Range Facility at Barking Sands
in Kauai, Hawaii. Lake Erie detected and tracked the target with its
onboard AN/SPY-1 radar. The event was the third consecutive successful
intercept test of the SM-3 Block IB missile. (U.S. Navy photo/Released)
the Standard Missile-3
The SM-3 does not contain an explosive warhead, but instead destroys
the threats using sheer impact, equivalent to a 10-ton truck traveling
at 600 mph.
» More than 155 SM-3s have been delivered ahead of schedule and
» Raytheon is on track to deliver the next-generation SM-3 Block
IB in 2015.
» SM-3 Block IB will be deployed in both sea-based and land-based