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Missile Defense Agency and U.S. Navy demonstrate Aegis Weapon System capabilities

Source: Missile Defense Agency (MDA)

The Missile Defense Agency (MDA) and U.S. Navy successfully executed Flight Test Other-23 (FTX-23) or Stellar Sisyphus, a two part developmental test of sensor tracking and communications link capabilities.

 

Conducted off the coast of the Pacific Missile Range Facility, Kauai, Hawaii, the first part of this multi-sensor test successfully demonstrated that the Aegis Weapon System tracked and discriminated a complex target scene of a Medium Range Ballistic Missile target with countermeasures.

The second part of this test included the firing of a Standard Missile – 3 Block IIA (SM-3 Blk IIA), which intercepted the same Medium Range Ballistic Missile target, verifying additional functionality of the SM-3 Blk IIA.

 

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Together, this test demonstrated one of the most complicated target discrimination and intercept missions by the Aegis Weapon System to date.

“We are working closely with the Navy to provide new and enhanced capabilities against a constantly evolving threat,” said Lt. Gen. Heath Collins, MDA Director. “Today’s successful test was a key milestone in giving our Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense ships increased sensing and tracking tools to combat threat proliferation. This was an incredible accomplishment and I commend the U.S. Navy Sailors, the MDA team and our industry partners.”

 

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U.S. Navy Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyers USS McCampbell (DDG 85) and USS Jack H. Lucas (DDG 125) along with Aegis Ashore Missile Defense Test Complex and Advanced Radar Development Evaluation Laboratory participated in the event, collecting valuable tracking data on the target.

The test was planned as a tracking event of a complex target with the primary objective of collecting data on the target scene from multiple sensors across different viewing angles. While an intercept of the target was not necessary to achieve this objective, the SM-3 Blk IIA and the Aegis Weapons System demonstrated additional reserve capability with the successful hit. This data collection will help anchor modeling and simulation for future tracking and discrimination capabilities and improvements.

 

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