DSCA approves sale of SM-6 and SM-2 IIIC missiles to Australia

According to information published by the Defense Security Cooperation Agency on August 25, 2021, the State Department has made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to the Government of Australia of Defense Services Related to Future Standard Missile Production and related equipment for an estimated cost of $350 million. The Defense Security Cooperation Agency delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale.
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Russian Vyborg Shipyard laid the Purga ice class coastguard ship of project 23550 925 001 Standard Missile 6 Block I or SM-6 (Picture source: Twitter account of Real Clear Defense)

The Government of Australia has requested to buy defense services related to the future purchase of Standard Missile 6 Block I (SM-6) and Standard Missile 2 Block IIIC (SM-2 IIIC) missiles. These services include development; engineering, integration, and testing (EI&T); obsolescence engineering activities required to ensure readiness; U.S. Government and contractor engineering/technical assistance, and related studies and analysis support; technical and logistics support services; and other related elements of program and logistical support. The total estimated value is $350 million.

This proposed sale will support the foreign policy and national security objectives of the United States. Australia is one of our most important allies in the Western Pacific. Australia is strategically positioned to contribute significantly to ensuring peace and economic stability in the region. It is vital to the U.S. national interest to assist our ally in developing and maintaining a strong and ready self-defense capability.

The proposed sale will support the readiness and future sale of vital anti-air warfare capability that can be deployed from Australia’s newest Hunter-Class Destroyers equipped with the latest AEGIS Combat Systems. The purchase of Standard Missile 6 Block I (SM-6) and Standard Missile 2 Block IIIC (SM-2 IIIC) missiles is currently included in Australia’s procurement roadmap and will improve their ability to operate alongside U.S. and Allied naval forces against the full spectrum of naval threats. Australia will have no difficulty absorbing these defense services into its armed forces.

The principal U.S. contractor will be Raytheon Missiles and Defense (RMD), Tucson, AZ.

The SM-6 also called RIM-174 Standard Extended Range Active Missile (ERAM) designed to provide capability against fixed and rotary-wing aircraft, unmanned aerial vehicles, anti-ship cruise missiles in flight, both over sea and land, and terminal ballistic missile defense. It can also be used as a high-speed anti-ship missile. The SM-6 missile has a length of 6.6m and a diameter of 0.5m. It weighs 1,500 kg and carries a 64 kg blast fragmentation warhead. The interceptor uses semi-active homing and active homing guidance to achieve accurate engagement of the assigned targets. The missile has an estimated range of 250 nautical miles (463 km).