The Japanese Maritime Self Defense Forces and the United States Missile Defense Agency (MDA) have successfully completed the interception flight test of the SM-3® IB Block in collaboration with the US Navy off the coast of Kauai in Hawaii, as reported by Raytheon Mediaroom on September 12, 2018.
The SM-3® Block IB missile made by Raytheon Company managed to intercept simulated targets as ballistic missiles, marking the first time Japan has tested new interceptors as announced by MDA.
Target missiles were launched from Pacific Missile Facilities in Hawaii and interceptors were launched from the JDS Atago destroyer (DDG-177), to verify the ability of the latest ballistic missile defense from modernized destroyers.
This flight test mission is an important milestone in the cooperation between Japan and the US missile defense which now adopts the SM-3® Block IA interceptor, but the SM-3® Block IB interceptor increases the two-color search and throttle transfer and system controls that allow engagement with a greater set of threats.
“The family of Standard Missile-3 (SM-3®) consistently demonstrates the ability to fight new threats, both on land and at sea,” said President of Raytheon Missile Systems. “This test underlines the importance of allied and the strongest ballistic missile defense interoperability that we provide when we work with our allies”.
The SM-3® is produced at Raytheon's Space Factory plant in Tucson, Arizona and the company's integration facility in Huntsville, Alabama, USA.