Raytheon’s Standard Missile Naval Defense Family (SM-1 to SM-6)
March 9/16: Raytheon’s recent SM-6 anti-air missile test was used to engage the decommissioned USS Reuben James, (FFG 57) made famous for its appearance in the 1990 movie The Hunt for Red October. The test was a demonstration of the Navy’s concept of “distributed lethality,” employing ships in dispersed formations to increase the offensive might of the surface force, and enabling future options for the joint force commander. The USS John Paul Jones fired the SM-6 while another Arleigh Burke-class destroyer was on station as the assist ship.
Variants of the SM-2 Standard missile are the USA’s primary fleet defense anti-air weapon, and serve with 13 navies worldwide. The most common variant is the RIM-66K-L/ SM-2 Standard Block IIIB, which entered service in 1998. The Standard family extends far beyond the SM-2 missile, however; several nations still use the SM-1, the SM-3 is rising to international prominence as a missile defense weapon, and the SM-6 program is on track to supplement the SM-2. These missiles are designed to be paired with the AEGIS radar and combat system, but can be employed independently by ships with older or newer radar systems.
This article covers each variant in the Standard missile family, plus several years worth of American and Foreign Military Sales requests and contracts and key events; and offers the budgetary, technical, and geopolitical background that can help put all that in context.
The Standard Missile Naval Defense Family: Missiles and Plans
SM-1: Allied Legacy
SM-2: The Mainstay
SM-3: Ballistic Missile Killer
SM-6 ERAM: Next-Generation Air Defense
The Standard Missile Naval Defense Family: Programs
SM-3 Programs: 2006-2020 Timeline
The Standard Missile Naval Defense Family: US Contracts & Events
FY 2014 – 2015
FY 2006 and Earlier
The Standard Missile Naval Defense Family: Exports & Related Key Events
2012 – 2014
News & Views
Fill in the secure form below to activate your subscription right away (or pick another plan)