U.S. Department of Defense - Missile Defense Agency

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Missile Defense Agency

MDA News Release

5700 18th Street, Bldg 245
Fort Belvoir, VA 22060-5573

MDA Demonstrates Performance of SM-3 Block IB in Successful Flight Tests

May 26, 2016

The Missile Defense Agency and U.S. Navy sailors aboard USS Hopper (DDG 70) successfully conducted two developmental flight tests of the Standard Missile-3 (SM-3) Block IB Threat Upgrade guided missile on May 25 and 26 off the west coast of Hawaii.

The flight tests, designated Controlled Test Vehicle (CTV)-01a and CTV-02, demonstrated the successful performance of design modifications to the SM-3 third-stage rocket motor (TSRM) nozzle.  The results of these flight tests will support a future SM-3 Block IB production authorization request.

"Based on the early data, the missiles performed as designed and validated the design modifications we made to further improve the reliability of the SM-3 Block IB," said MDA Director Vice Adm. Jim Syring. "I was very proud of the government and industry team in their performance this week and am appreciative of the support provided by USS Hopper and her great crew."

During each test, Hopper's Aegis Weapon System was prompted to generate a fire control solution and launch an SM-3 against a simulated target. No intercept was planned, and no live target missile was launched. The MDA and the U.S. Navy cooperatively manage the Aegis BMD program. Additional information about all elements of the Ballistic Missile Defense System can be found here.