first published on October 31, 2018 by Will
After multiple failed attempts, the US Navy conducted a successful test of the SM-3 missile defense system by intercepting a test missile in late October.
A target test missile was launched from the Pacific Missile Range Facility at Kauai, Hawaii. The USS JOHN FINN (DDG-113) detected and tracked the target missile with its onboard AN/SPY-1 radar. The ship then launched an SM-3 Block IIA guided missile which intercepted the target.
The SM-3 Block IIA was developed by the US and Japan. The system can be launched from sea or land with the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense system. SM-3 are slated to be placed in Romania, Poland, and Japan.
This is the second successful attempt of the defense system, and the fourth test overall. The very first system test in February 2017 was successful, however, the next two were failures. During the second test, a sailor accidentally triggered the missile’s self-destruct feature, which was likely a $100 million error.