The Missile Defense Agency the week of July 27 successfully conducted a series of four flight test events exercising the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) element of the nation’s Ballistic Missile Defense System (BMDS), according to an agency statement.
The flight test, designated Multi-Mission Warfare (MMW) events 1 through 4, demonstrated successful intercepts of short-range ballistic missile and cruise missile targets by the USS John Paul Jones, configured with Aegis Baseline 9.C1 (BMD 5.0 Capability Upgrade) and using Standard Missile (SM)-6 Dual I and SM-2 Block IV missiles. All flight test events were conducted at the Pacific Missile Range Facility; Kauai, Hawaii.
Event 1: On July 29 at approximately 4:30 a.m. EDT, a short-range ballistic missile (SRBM) target was launched from PMRF in a northwesterly trajectory. The USS John Paul Jones, positioned west of Hawaii, detected, tracked and launched a SM-6 Dual I missile, resulting in a successful target intercept. This was the first live fire event of the SM-6 Dual I missile, MDA said.
Event 2: On July 30 at approximately 2:15 a.m. EDT, a SRBM target was launched from PMRF in a northwesterly trajectory. The USS John Paul Jones detected, tracked and launched a SM-2 Block IV missile, resulting in a successful target intercept.
Event 3: On July 31 at approximately 8:30 p.m. EDT, an AQM-37C cruise missile target was air-launched to replicate an air-warfare threat. The USS John Paul Jones detected, tracked and successfully engaged the target using a SM-6 Dual I missile.
Event 4: On August 1 at approximately 9:45 p.m. EDT, a BQM-74E cruise missile target was launched from PMRF. The USS John Paul Jones detected, tracked and successfully engaged the target using a SM-6 Dual I missile. The SM-6’s proximity-fuze warhead was programmed not to detonate after reaching the lethal distance from the target, thus providing the ability to recover and reuse the BQM-74E target.
SM-6 is developed by Raytheon [RTN], which said Aug. 3 in a statement SM-6 Dual I is on track to achieve initial operational capability (IOC) in 2016.