SM-3 Block IIA completes second flight test
The US Navy and Missile Defense Agency (MDA) have successfully conducted the second flight test of Raytheon’s Standard Missile-3 (SM-3) Block IIA, the company announced on 8 December.
An SM-3 Block IIA was launched from an MK 41 launcher during the Controlled Test Vehicle-02 flight test at the navy’s Point Mugu Sea Range on Saint Nicolas Island, California.
The missile did not intercept a target; the aim of the test was to evaluate the SM-3 Block IIA's kinetic warhead and divert and attitude control system functionality, along with steering control section function, nosecone performance, booster separation, and second and third stage rocket motor separation.
The interceptor's kill vehicle searches, acquires, discriminates and tracks threats and then manoeuvres to engage. It also simultaneously provides kill assessment data back to the ship. The advance kill vehicle and larger rocket motors allow the SM-3 Block IIA to detect threats faster and protect larger regions from short- to intermediate-range ballistic missile threats.
The SM-3 Block IIA’s next live-fire test is scheduled in 2016 and will include an intercept of a ballistic missile target, with the missile be fired from a naval warship.
Taylor Lawrence, president, Raytheon Missile Systems, said: ‘The SM-3 Block IIA programme continues to reflect the MDA's commitment to maturing this capability for the defence of our nation, deployed forces, and our allies abroad. The success of this test keeps the programme on track for deployment at sea and ashore in the 2018 timeframe.’
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