Friday, September 30, 2016

SM-6 sets distance record for destroying target over the horizon.

via Raytheon Press Release.
In the longest range surface-to-air intercept of its kind in naval history, a Raytheon Company (NYSE: RTN) Standard Missile-6 successfully destroyed an over-the-horizon, threat target.
The mission also demonstrated the combat capabilities that SM-6 brings to Naval Integrated Fire Control-Counter Air, an effort designed to link U.S. Navy ships and airborne sensors into a single network via Cooperative Engagement Capability. The SM-6 was fired from the USS Princeton (CG59), a U.S. Navy Cruiser equipped with the latest Aegis baseline 9 combat system.
The active radar and extended range of the 'smart missile' allow it to track and destroy over-the-horizon targets, out of sight of operators on deck.
"The multi-mission SM-6 is in a class of its own as it demonstrates its ability to go further, faster and counter more threats to offer maximum mission flexibility," said Mike Campisi, Standard Missile-6 senior program director. "The missile's ability to defend against so many different threats makes it the go-to solution to meet modern fleet defense needs across the globe."
This is not the first time that SM-6 has shattered its own distance record. The missile broke the previous long-range intercept record in January of this year, a milestone it set itself in June of 2014.

SM-6 provides U.S. Navy vessels with extended-range protection against fixed- and rotary-wing aircraft, unmanned aerial vehicles, cruise missiles and ballistic missiles in the terminal phase of flight, and an offensive capability against surface targets.
This press release is a bit frustrating.  They talked alot but said very little.  Over the horizon is relative.  If you're standing at the top of Mount Everest then OTH is 209 miles.  If you're a U-2 pilot flying at 70,000 feet its 324 miles.

So while this sounds fantastic we still don't know if the Navy has a credible tool to deal with threat supersonic anti-ship cruise missiles.

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