PACIFIC MISSILE RANGE FACILITY,
Sept. 18, 2013
/PRNewswire/ -- In a Missile Defense Agency test, the U.S. Navy launched two Raytheon Company (NYSE: RTN)-made Standard Missile-3 Block IBs from the USS Lake Erie against a complex, separating short-range ballistic missile target. The first guided missile successfully destroyed the target using the sheer kinetic force of a massive collision in space.
The SM-3 is a defensive weapon used by the U.S. and
to defend against short- to intermediate-range ballistic missiles.
"Confidence in the SM-3 Block IB's defensive capability continues to grow with each flight test," said Dr.
, Raytheon Missile Systems president. "When this weapon deploys in 2015, the U.S. and our allies will have a tremendously reliable, capable defensive asset on their side."
During the test, two SM-3 interceptors were launched at a single target consecutively. The first SM-3 eliminated the target. The second SM-3 was designed to test the ship weapons system's ability to launch multiple missiles at one time against a threat. An intercept for the second SM-3 was not part of the test scenario.
"We're gaining a tremendous amount of information about what this missile can do, and in many instances it is far surpassing design requirements," said Dr.
, Raytheon Missile Systems' SM-3 program director. "The SM-3 Block IB is proving it can take on increasingly sophisticated scenarios, and that kind of confidence sets the stage for a production decision."
The test was the 25th successful flight test for the SM-3 program and the fourth back-to-back successful test of the next-generation SM-3 Block IB variant. Based on the highly successful SM-3 Block IA currently deployed around the world today, the SM-3 Block IB incorporates an enhanced two-color infrared seeker and the Throttleable Divert and Attitude Control System, a mechanism that propels the missile toward incoming targets.