May 27, 2014
Success for First Aegis Ashore Missile Launch
Aegis Ashore is being developed for installation on land facilities in Europe. Ground for the first installation was broken in October at a military base in Romania, and the system is scheduled to become operational by late 2015.
Launch of a Standard Missile 3 (SM-3) Block IB, from a test installation , was conducted by the Missile Defense Agency, the US Navy and engineers from Lockheed.
The test validated the layout of Aegis Ashore, which differs from the shipboard installation familiar to thousands of cruiser and destroyer sailors in that the vertical launch cells are considerably farther from the system’s command-and-control facilities.
In Hawaii, the launcher is about three-and-a-half miles from the Aegis deckhouse . The layout in Romania will be closer together.
Aegis Ashore uses a system nearly identical to the seagoing version, with the same vertical launch system, fire control system and SPY-1D radar. The building housing the system is strikingly similar, inside and out, to the steel deckhouse of Aegis ships.
The test, was also the first launch of an SM-3 by Aegis Baseline 9, the latest iteration of the Aegis combat system.
The flight test in Hawaii used Aegis Ashore Controlled Test Vehicle 01, and used a simulated target.
Only one more Aegis Ashore flight test is scheduled in Hawaii. An event using a real target is planned for next year.
The US Army Corps of Engineers is building an Aegis Ashore complex on 269 acres at a base near Deveselu, Romania.