RIM-162 ESSM Missile: Naval Anti-Air in a Quad Pack
October 1/21: Block 2 Raytheon won a $358 million contract in support of the fiscal 2021-2023 Evolved Seasparrow Missile (ESSM) Block 2 full rate production requirements. The ESSM program is an international cooperative effort to design, develop, test, and procure ESSM missiles. The ESSM provides enhanced ship defense. The ESSM program is an international cooperative effort to design, develop, test, and procure ESSM missiles. The ESSM provides enhanced ship defense. This contract combines purchases for the Navy and the governments of Canada, Australia, Greece, Germany, Norway, Turkey, Portugal, Belgium, the Netherlands, and Denmark under the NATO Seasparrow Consortium. Estimated completion will be by March 2025.
The RIM-162 Evolved Sea Sparrow Missile (ESSM) is used to protect ships from attacking missiles and aircraft, and is designed to counter supersonic maneuvering anti-ship missiles. Compared to the RIM-7 Sea Sparrow, ESSM is effectively a new missile with a larger, more powerful rocket motor for increased range, a different aerodynamic layout for improved agility, and the latest missile guidance technology. Testing has even shown the ESSM to be effective against fast surface craft, an option that greatly expands the missile’s utility. As a further bonus, the RIM-162 ESSM has the ability to be “quad-packed” in the Mk 41 vertical launching system, allowing 4 missiles to be carried per launch cell instead of loading one larger SM-2 Standard missile or similar equipment.
This is DID’s FOCUS article for the program, containing details about the RIM-162 Evolved Sea Sparrow missile family, and contracts placed under this program since 1999. The Sea Sparrow was widely used aboard NATO warships, so it isn’t surprising that the ESSM is an international program. The NATO Sea Sparrow Consortium includes Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Germany, Greece, The Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Turkey, and the USA – as well as non-NATO Australia. Foreign Military Sales ESSM customers outside this consortium include Japan, Thailand, and the United Arab Emirates.
ESSM: The Missiles
More Than An Upgrade
ESSM Program: The USA, and Beyond
ESSM-Related Contracts & Key Events
FY 2014 – 2015
FY 2002 – 2005
FY 2002 and earlier
Additional Readings & Sources
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