The JMSDF (Japanese Maritime Self Defence Force) is working closely with the USA on missile defense activities. Air Force cooperation has also improved by leaps and bounds, allowing for much closer coordination with the USA in all aspects of operations – including missile tracking.
Japanese involvement includes modification and improvements to the SM-3 long-range anti-air/ABM missile. This weapon will form the outer layer of Japan’s ABM system, deployed from its current fleet of 4 Kongo Class AEGIS destroyers and their 2 larger Atago Class successors. The inner layer will consist of land-based Japan Self Defense Forces PAC-3 Patriot missiles, and together they will form the initial ballistic missile defense architecture for mainland Japan.
JMSDF BMD: The Equipment
Japan already had Kongo-Class AEGIS destroyers, and SM-3 Block IA Standard missiles, in its inventory when the upgrades began. The JMSDF had 4 AEGIS destroyers operating with SM-2 missiles at sea when the upgrades were first requested; the 5th and 6th AEGIS destroyers were under construction. The US DSCA believed, correctly, that the JMSDF was fully capable of integrating the modified AEGIS Weapon System and SM-3 Block IA into its operational forces, and will receive what it needs to maintain and support the systems.
AEGIS BMD 3.0 can be used only for tracking, while AEGIS BMD 3.6.1 can be used for full engagement. Japan’s goal was to have all ship equipped with BMD 3.6.1, and this has been achieved. Presumably, the final upgrades will also include Cooperative Engagement Capability.
A program is underway to upgrade Japan’s 2 Atago Class AEGIS destroyers, which are a larger version of the Kongo Class. The initial upgrade is to Aegis ACB-12 with TI-12, and full ballistic missile defense capability is expected. This will give Japan 6 BMD ships, and Japan may be about to allocate funds to build 2 new destroyers with AEGIS BMD pre-installed. If so, current estimates indicate that they would arrive in 2020 – 2021.
Based on a conservative 1 deployed, 1 portside/ training, 1 maintenance ratio, 6 ships ensures 2 deployed vessels at all times. In reality, the amount of time in maintenance is smaller, but 8 ships provide more surge capacity coverage, act as insurance against accidents that may take a ship or 2 out of service, and allow the JMSDF to use its top-end ships for more territorial patrols. America’s long-running failure to prevent North Korea from going nuclear has become a grave concern, but not the only one. China is stepping up its activities in the Yellow Sea and beyond, especially around disputed territories.
The USA has tested AEGIS BMD 4.0.2 equipment and software on board USS Lake Erie [CG 70], and is beginning to roll it out to their fleet. Unless Japan demands a single BMD combat system fleet-wide, BMD 4.0.2 offers advantages for the Atago Class retrofits when using the current SM-3 Block IB missile.
Meanwhile, American system development is continuing. BMD 5.0 will shift the system to full open architecture electronics, and BMD 5.1 will introduce compatibility with the US-Japanese SM-3 Block IIA. Eventually, the Japanese will be upgrading their existing AEGIS BMD systems – the only questions are to what versions, and how many times.
The jointly-developed SM-3 Block IIA missile is wider, creating longer range and better intercept geometry. In English: it’s faster and more powerful, with the ability to defend larger areas, and hit longer-range missiles with a higher flight profile. Whereas SM-3 Block I missiles would require about 6 ships to defend Japan, SM-3 Block IIA missiles could cut that to 3 or even 2. Introduction is tentatively scheduled for 2018.
Contracts & Key Events
2013 – 2019
December 21/20: Standoff Attack Missiles Local media reports that Japanese defense officials are considering the option of installing new long-range standoff attack missiles on the two new Aegis warships to be built. Yomuiri Shimbun says the range of the new indigenous missiles will be around 1,000 km. The government may install such missiles on the two ships equipped with Aegis missile interceptor systems in response to increasing naval activities by Beijing in the East China Sea amid tensions over the Japanese-administered Senkaku Islands, which Beijing claims and calls the Diaoyu. The Cabinet approved Friday the building of the two vessels to enhance its defense capabilities in the face of the North Korean missile threat.
December 11/20: Japan Japan has officially decided that it will build two more Aegis warships to replace the abandoned Aegis Ashore program, Defense Minister Nobuo Kishi said. Tokyo will also be extended the range of its indigenous Type 12 surface-to-ship missile.Opposition lawmakers criticize the move to boost the range of the missile, saying that this is to make the weapon as a tool to attack enemy bases. Chief cabinet secretary Kato explained that the range improvement was to extend the defense capabilities.
November 24/20: Aegis Ashore Alternative Is Expensive An audit into the costs of building two new warships as the alternative for Aegis Ashore has found that it will cost Japan $4.8 billion. The new Maya Class destroyer already costs $1.6 billion each. The new warship will need to be lengthened, raising the tonnage. The figure, shown in an interim report of a private sector study commissioned by the Defense Ministry, is not significantly different from the cost of another offshore replacement proposal also under consideration. The government plans to coordinate around the Aegis ship option as it is viewed as allowing more operational flexibility.
October 3/19: Follow-On Technical Support Sustainment and Services The US State Department approved a Foreign Military Sale to Japan of Follow-On Technical Support sustainment and services in support of eight Japan AEGIS Destroyers consisting of four KONGO Class Destroyers, two ATAGO Class Destroyers, two MAYA Class Destroyers and one Japanese Computer Test Site (JCPTS). The estimated value of the deal is $140 million. The sustainment efforts will include AEGIS software updates, system integration and testing, US Government and contractor technical assistance, and other related elements of logistics and program support. The estimated cost is $140 million.
July 18/19: Second Maya Class Destroyer Shipbuilding company Japan Marine United Corporation (JMU) launched the second Maya Class guided missile destroyer for the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF). The vessel is named “Haguro“. The destroyer, which will be the eighth JMSDF ship to be equipped with the Aegis Combat System, is 5m longer than the Atago Class destroyers operated by the JMSDF. Haguro will use the Aegis Baseline J7 supported by the Lockheed Martin/Raytheon AN/SPY-1D(V) phased array radar and the Northrop Grumman AN/SPQ-9B X-band high-resolution fire-control radar. DDG-180 Haguro is expected to be commissioned with the JMSDF in 2021. The first ship of the class, JS Maya, commenced her sea trials a month ago.
July 9/19: Atago! Japan’s Atago Class Guided Missile Destroyer completed its second round of sea trials last month, according to local media reports. The new ship dubbed Maya or PN 179 is right on track for commissioning in 2020. The Maya is the Japan Maritime Self Defense Force’s seventh surface combatant to be equipped with the Aegis combat system. The Atago Class ships are improved versions of the Kongou Class. The Aegis system used on Atago Class ships is more capable than that, used on the previous Kongou Class. The Atago Class has a 127 mm dual-purpose gun in a stealth-shaped mount. For anti-submarine warfare there are 2 triple-tube torpedo launchers for Mk.46 Mod.5 Neartip, or Japanese Type 73 torpedoes.
November 10/15: Japan is reportedly considering an acquisition of multi-purpose helicopters to equip its fleet of ships, particularly the Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force’s Izumo-class. The JMSDF launched its second helicopter carrier in August, with the Japanese Ministry of Defense now thought to be evaluating several possible helicopter options.
Sept 30/14: Atago base upgrades. Lockheed Martin Mission Systems and Training in Moorestown, NJ receives a $53.6 million contract modification to upgrade Japan’s Atago Class Ships DDG 177 and DDG 178 from Aegis Baseline 7 Phase 1R, to the Advanced Capability Build 12 software with Technology Insertion 12 hardware. All funds are committed immediately.
Work will be performed in Moorestown, NJ (65%), and Chelmsford, MA (35%), and is expected to be complete by March 2017. US Navy NAVSEA in Washington, DC manages the contract as Japan’s FMS agent (N00024-13-C-5111).
Aug 11/14: Land-based. Japan’s government is reportedly considering land-based SM-3 missiles as an upper-tier complement to the PATRIOT PAC-3 missiles being deployed as point defense, similar to the Aegis Ashore installations in Europe.
The move seems as if it would duplicate naval deployment of SM-3s, but land-based SM-3 missiles would deepen Japan’s available reserves against larger-scale “rush” attacks, while freeing Japan’s advanced air defense destroyers to perform their air defense role with fewer compromises. It would also be possible for Japan to quickly deploy Aegis Ashore bases with SM-3 Block IBs, before the jointly developed SM-3 Block IIA is ready, then rotate SM-3 Block IBs to the land fleet once the Block IIA is ready for naval use. Sources: Mainichi, “Defense ministry mulls introducing ground-based SM-3 interceptor missiles”.
July 22/14: More ships? The Yomiuri Shimbun reports that Japan is speeding up a planned purchase of 2 new ballistic missile defense destroyers (q.v. Nov 6/13), with the first order to be placed in FY 2015, and the 2nd in FY 2016. Each ship would cost about YEN 150 billion (about $1.478 billion), which is a better price than the Americans pay for their smaller Arleigh Burke Flight IIA destroyers.
These 2 orders would definitely fall within the early portion of the 2013 – 2023 National Defense Program Guidelines, which first mentioned the planned vessels. Media estimates indicate that these 2 ships would be fielded in 2020 – 2021. In the interim, US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel announced that the USA would raise the number of AEGIS BMD destroyers homeported at Yokosuka from 5 – 7 ships by 2017. Sources: Yomiuri Shimbun’s The Japan News, “2 more Aegis destroyers set for FY20” | The Diplomat, “Japan’s Building 2 Aegis Destroyers”.
May 16/14: Support. Lockheed Martin Mission Systems & Training in Moorestown, NJ receives a $92.6 million contract modification to fulfill ongoing Aegis lifetime support requirements for the Japan Maritime Self Defense Force. It includes for Aegis Weapon System and Aegis Combat System combat systems engineering, in-country support services, and staging support.
$47 million in Japanese funds are committed immediately. Work will be performed in Moorestown, NJ (95.1%); Kumi, South Korea (1.5%); Chinhae, South Korea (1.4%); Kongsberg, Norway (0.86%); Tokyo, Japan (0.5%); Sasebo, Japan (0.23%); Maizuru, Japan (0.14%); San Fernando, Spain (0.12%); and Yokohama, Japan (0.1%), and is expected to be completed by November 2014. US NAVSEA in Washington, DC acts as Japan’s agent (N00024-11-C-5106).
Nov 6/13: 2 more? Japan’s Defense Ministry reportedly plans to add 2 more AEGIS BMD destroyers to its next National Defense Program Guidelines submission, which covers its goals for the next 10 years. It would be the 1st step in growing the country’s BMD fleet from 6 ships to 8.
The new SM-3 Block IIA missile being co-developed with the USA would allow just 2 ships to cover Japan, but that won’t be ready until 2018 or later. Based on a conservative 1 deployed, 1 portside/ training, 1 maintenance ratio, 6 ships ensures 2 deployed vessels at all times. In reality, the amount of time in maintenance is smaller than that ratio, but 8 ships provide more surge capacity coverage, act as insurance against accidents that may take a ship or 2 out of service, and allow the JMSDF to use its top-end ships for more territorial patrols. America’s long-running failure to prevent North Korea from going nuclear has become a grave concern, but not the only one. China is stepping up its activities in the Yellow Sea and beyond, especially around disputed territories.
The default assumption is that the 2 new ships would be based on Japan’s larger and more modern Atago Class derivative, with BMD systems pre-installed. Depending on Japan’s desired timing and budget, however, Japan could order 2 more Kongo Class ships to save a bit of money. Or, they could look ahead to the USA’s incipient Arleigh Burke Flight III design and its AMDR dual-band SPY-1D / SPQ-9B radar system. Sources: Asahi Shimbun, “Japan plans 2 more Aegis destroyers to defend against North Korea” | Japan Times, “Japan to build two more Aegis destroyers to boost missile defense”.
April 11/13: Atago Class. Lockheed Martin Mission Systems and Training in Moorestown, NJ receives a $29.5 million cost-plus-fixed fee contract for all of the cabinets, consoles, cables and switches needed to support development and testing of the Japan Aegis modernization baseline. When asked about these last 2 contracts, Lockheed Martin’s director of International AEGIS Programs Doug Wilhelm called them:
“…the first step in the Japan Aegis Modernization (JAMOD) program… [for] two of Japan’s existing AEGIS Destroyers [DID: which presumably means the Atago Class, else it would be 4 ships]. Specifically, this contract procures the upgraded equipment that will be installed on the ships in Japan and at a land-based test facility in Moorestown, N.J. The next JAMOD contract award, expected later this year, will be for the completion of Lockheed Martin’s Combat System Engineering efforts to develop, test, and deliver upgraded AEGIS computer programs for the ships. JAMOD will provide the Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) with the ability to defend against ballistic missile threats while simultaneously providing defensive capabilities in Air, Surface, and Subsurface mission areas.”
The firm was asked, but they would not specify the target Aegis BMD baseline. Work will be performed in Moorestown, NJ (83.6%); Clearwater, FL (16.3%); Akron, OH (0.1%), and is expected to be complete by June 2014. All funds are committed immediately, and the contract was not competitively procured in accordance with 10 U.S.C. 2304(1)(4). US NAVSEA in Washington DC acts as Japan’s FMS agent (N00024-13-C-5111).
March 28/13: Atago Class. Lockheed Martin Mission Systems and Training in Moorestown, NJ receives a $65 million modification to previously awarded contract to exercise options for “fiscal 2013 Aegis Weapon System Modernization requirements for Japan.” All funding is committed immediately, but the scope of this project isn’t yet clear.
Work will be performed in Moorestown, NJ (69%); Clearwater, FL (30%); and Akron, OH (1%), and is expected to be complete by January 2017. US NAVSEA in Washington DC acts as Japan’s FMS agent (N00024-11-C-5118).
The contract is issued amidst growing tensions involving North Korea, whose leadership seems intent on making Abe’s case for higher military spending much more attractive. We’d say that “the check is in the email,” but that’s North Korea’s actual goal. Hey, all that cognac is expensive – Office 38 needs to be paid.
2011 – 2012
Dec 10/12: Atago Class. The US DSCA announces [PDF] Japan’s formal request to upgrade its 2 Atago Class AEGIS destroyers for ballistic missile defense, an estimated cost of up to $421 million.
The Atagos are a larger and more advanced derivative of the Kongo Class, with 96 vertical launching cells instead of 90, and improved helicopter handling facilities that include a hangar. They don’t currently have missile defense capability. This set of upgrades would bring them to BMD parity with their counterparts, and also upgrade a few other systems on board. In order to equip JS Atago and JS Ashigara (DDG 177 & 178), Japan would order:
* The “J6” standard AEGIS Weapon System Computer Program
* 2 Multi-Mission Signal Processors to upgrade their existing AN/SPY-1Dv radars
* 2 Common Processor Systems
* Other Ballistic Missile Defense electronics (Mission Planner Blade server processors hosted in CPS, and 2 Kill Assessment Systems/Weapon Data Recording Cabinets),
* 2 ship sets of Common Display Systems (44 OJ-827v1 Tri Screen Display Consoles, 8 Display Processor Cabinets, 2 Video Wall Screen and Projector Systems, 46 Flat Panel Displays, and 2 Distributed Video Systems)
* 2 ship sets of AN/SPQ-15 Digital Video Distribution Systems
* 2 ship sets of Operational Readiness Test Systems hosted in AEGIS Weapon Systems computing infrastructure
* Upgrades of their MK-41 Vertical Launching Systems to Baseline 7 (24 MK-448 MOD 1 Motor Control Panels, 48 MK-179 MOD 0 Programmable Power4 Supplies, 24 MK-5 MOD 1 Launch Sequencers, 4 Fiber Optic Distribution Boxes, and 24 Single Module Junction Boxes)
* 4 MK-235 Mod 7 Launch Control Units with Global Positioning System Integrator
* 2 ship sets of MK-34 Gun Weapon Systems and MK-20 Electro-Optical Sensor Systems
* Plus software updates, other ordnance alterations and engineering changes, spare and repair parts, support equipment, tools and test equipment, technical data and publications, personnel training and training equipment, and US Government and contractor support.
The principal contractor would be Lockheed Martin MS2 in Mooretown, NJ, and implementation of this proposed sale would require multiple trips to Japan involving 6 US Government and 10 contractor representatives over 3 years, performing technical reviews/support, programs management, and training.
Atago Class upgrade request
Aug 16/12: Atago Class. Media reports surface that Japan is looking to add ballistic missile defense upgrades its 2 Atago Class destroyers, which are a slightly larger successor variant of the Kongo Class. Atago entered service in 2007, and Ashigara followed a year later in 2008.
The question is which upgrades Japan and the USA are discussing. Reports indicate that it will be a more modern version of the Aegis BMD system, and the most advanced deployed version is Aegis BMD 4.0.1. The new system is another step along the migration to open architecture electronics, and its improvements include target discrimination, Launch on Remote tracking data, and the ability to handle longer-range engagements against more sophisticated ballistic missiles.
On the other hand, the reports also say that “With such a modernization, the Atago and Ashigara would be capable of firing an updated SM-3 missile that Japan is co-developing with the United States.” That missile is the SM-3 Block IIA, but according to the US Missile Defense Agency, that will require Aegis BMD 5.1, which isn’t slated for fielding until 2018.
If the upgrades are intended to be a near-term project that widens Japan’s defensive umbrella to 6 ships, Aegis BMD 4.0.1 is the likely version, and future upgrades will be required when Japan wants to fully integrate the Block IIA missile into its fleet. Reuters.
April 13/12: Lockheed Martin Mission Systems and Sensors, Moorestown, NJ receives a $7.4 million cost-plus-incentive-fee contract modification for technical engineering and related operation and maintenance of Navy AEGIS sites in NJ in support of AEGIS Foreign Military Sales cases JA-P-FNC (Japan) and SP-P-LGB (Spain), and U.S. Navy AEGIS support efforts.
“This contract modification will provide continuing technical engineering, logistics, configuration management, quality assurance, operation and maintenance for AEGIS program support sites located in NJ. These facilities incorporate highly integrated, classified, real-time networks that connect numerous contractor and United States government facilities required to build, integrate and deliver computer code for U.S. Navy and Foreign Military Sales requirements.”
While Spain has not deployed SM-3 missiles, it has sent its F100 AEGIS frigates to participate in American ballistic missile defense exercises as tracking ships. Work will be performed in Moorestown, NJ, and is expected to be complete by September 2012. US Naval Sea Systems Command in Washington, DC manages the contracts, and acts as Japan & Spain’s FMS agent (N00024-10-C-5124).
Sept 29/11: Lockheed Martin Mission Systems & Sensors in Moorestown, NJ receives a $157.6 million cost-plus-fixed-fee contract for engineering, alteration installation/repair overhaul execution, computer program maintenance, in-country support services, and staging support to fulfill Aegis lifetime support requirements of the Japan Maritime Self Defense Force. This includes both the radar and combat system components, and if all options are exercised, the contract total could rise to $228.2 million.
Work will be performed in Moorestown, NJ (82.9%); Baltimore, MD (3.4%); Tokyo, Japan (3.1%); Seoul, South Korea (2.5%); Kongsberg, Norway (2.3%); Washington, DC (1.3%); Nagasaki, Japan (1.1%); Yokohama, Japan (1.1%); Pusan, South Korea (0.8%); Maizuru, Japan (0.5%); Sasebo, Japan (0.5%); and Yokosuka, Japan (0.5%), and is expected to be completed by January 2016. Since it’s a Foreign Military Sale contract, it was not competitively procured by US Naval Sea Systems Command in Washington, DC, which acts as Japan’s agent (N00024-11-C-5106).
Sept 17/11: Mianichi Daily News reports US notification to Japan that the SM-3 Block IIA will be delayed 2 years, because the kill vehicle needs additional testing. The USA will cover the additional costs.
The original development plan involved a 9-year effort ending in 2014, with Japan paying $1.0 – 1.2 billion, and the USA $1.1 – 1.5 billion. That will now extend to 2016, with the USA looking to deploy the new missile in 2018. Japan had planned to deploy the SM-3 Block IIA in 2020 on its Kongo Class BMD destroyers, and the question is whether that deployment will also be delayed.
Sept 7/11: Mianichi Daily News reports that Japan’s Defense Ministry has begun launching about 15 mock missiles and collecting data, in a YEN 8.2 billion (currently about $106 million) bid to boost the accuracy of detecting and tracking missiles under the missile defense plan. The operation is expected to run until the end of March 2013.
2008 – 2010
Oct 29/10: JFTM-4. The recently upgraded JS Kirishima [DDG-174] successfully hits a separating “1,000 km class” ballistic missile target using an SM-3 Block 1A missile, in test JFTM-4 off the coast of Kauai in Hawaii. It’s the 3rd of 4 successful test firings for the JMSDF. America’s USS Lake Erie [GC-70] cruiser and USS Russell destroyer [DDG-59] also participated in this test, tracking the target and simulating their own intercepts.
The firing follows another test earlier this month, in which JS Kirishima acquired a separating target passed from a U.S. destroyer with her own sensors, and performed a simulated engagement. Jeff Bantle, Lockheed Martin’s vice president of Surface-Sea Based Missile Defense Systems, said that “This [live fire] test completes the planned upgrade of the Japanese navy’s destroyers with the Aegis ballistic missile defense capability.” US MDA | Lockheed Martin | Raytheon (incl. video).
Oct 27/09: JFTM-3. The Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force ship JS Myoko [DDG-175] uses an SM-3 Block IA missile and its AEGIS BMD 3.6.1 system to engage and destroy a medium-range ballistic missile (MRBM) target more than 100 miles above the Pacific Ocean. It is the 2nd successful Japanese intercept in 3 tries, and the 20th successful intercept out of 24 tries for the SM-3.
The destroyer USS Paul Hamilton [DDG-60] tracked the target and performed a simulated engagement, while the cruiser USS Lake Erie [CG-70] tested its next-generation AEGIS BMD 4.0.1 system’s improved signal processor and target discrimination to track the missile target and the post-intercept debris. US MDA: Release [PDF] | Photos | Video || Lockheed Martin | Raytheon.
July 2/09: Lockheed Martin Maritime Systems and Sensors of Moorestown, NJ receives a $7 million modification to a previously awarded contract (N00024-04-C-5144) for Japan AEGIS Modernization Lifetime Support to Kongo and Atago class ships.
Lockheed Martin will provide planning, scheduling, and execution support for Japan, while preparing for and responding to price and availability requests, conducting studies, computer program modifications, helping the U.S. Navy develop a technology control plan to protect sensitive technologies, and future cooperative development and interface between U.S. and Japan AEGIS baselines. This modification includes options which would increase the cumulative value of the contract to $41 million. Lockheed Martin will perform the work in Moorestown, NJ and expects to complete it by March 2010. The Naval Sea Systems Command in Washington, DC manages the contract.
Nov 19/08: JFTM-2. Japan’s JS Chokai [DDG-176] AEGIS destroyer launches an SM-3 Block 1A missile at an incoming ballistic missile target, during the 2nd cooperative US/Japanese sea-based Ballistic Missile Defense test off the coast of Kauai, Hawaii. The intercept does not go as well as JS Kongo’s Japan Flight Test Mission 1 (JFTM-1), however:
“Target [missile] performance, interceptor missile launch and flyout, and operation of the Aegis Weapon System by the crew were successful, but an intercept was not achieved… There is no immediate explanation for the failed intercept attempt. More information will be available after a thorough investigation. The JS CHOKAI crew performance was excellent in executing the mission.”
See US MDA release [PDF format] | Images | Videos. This is most unpleasant news to the supervising Japanese official, Rear Admiral Tomohisa Takei, Director General of Operations and Plans, for the Japanese Maritime Staff Office (MSO), Japan Maritime Self Defense Force (JMSDF). The US Missile Defense Agency release adds that:
“Before returning to Japan, JS CHOKAI will be loaded with additional SM-3 Block IA missiles. The ship will arrive in Japan with a supply of SM-3 missiles and with the operation of the Aegis BMD configuration tested and confirmed, ready to provide Japan with a proven midcourse engagement capability against the increasing ballistic missile threat present in that region.”
2004 – 2007
Dec 28/07: Lockheed Martin Maritime Sensors and Systems of Moorestown, NJ receives a $40.4 million firm-fixed-price and cost-plus-fixed-fee contract modification to fulfill a Japan AEGIS ship program requirement to procure BMD Block 2004 capability for a Kongo Class destroyer. A subsequent Reuters report established that this is the 3rd AEGIS upgrade contract, and adds that
“A contract for the fourth ship, Kirishima, now looks set “to follow by year’s end, if not sooner,” said Ken Ross, a Lockheed spokesman in Moorestown, NJ.”
If Kongo’s equipment is already installed, and the July 25/07 contract was for JS Chokai, then by inference this contract must cover JS Myoko [DDG-175]. A Jan 14/07 Lockheed Martin release confirms this.
Work will be performed at Moorestown, NJ and is expected to be complete by November 2009. The contract funds will not expire at the end of the fiscal year. The Missile Defense Agency Command in Dahlgren, VA issued the contract, and Japanese Foreign Military Sales funds will be used. The modification raises the full contract to $359 million so far. (N00024-06-C-6106).
Dec 17/07: JFTM-1 Success! The JS Kongo fires an SM-3 Block 1A missile, which tracks and kills its ballistic missile target. USS Lake Erie [CG 70] also participates as a secondary, using its radar to track the target. Read “Japanese Destroyer JS Kongo Intercepts Ballistic Missile” for more.
Nov 6/07: The JS Kongo participates in an ABM exercise with a fully functional AEGIS BMD system, using it to detect, track and conduct a simulated engagement of the ballistic missile targets. In the first dual-firing test, 2 SM-3 Block IA missiles fired simultaneously from the USS Lake Erie [CG 70] destroy 2 short-range ballistic missile targets launched from the U.S. Navy’s Pacific Missile Range Facility on Kauai, Hawaii. The test marked the 10th and 11th successful intercepts for the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense system’s SM-3. Kongo is scheduled to conduct Japan’s first firing flight test in late 2007. Lockheed Martin release.
July 25/07: Lockheed Martin Maritime Sensors and Systems of Moorestown, NJ received a $33.1 million firm-fixed-price contract modification to fulfill the Japan AEGIS ship program requirement to procure AEGIS BMD Block 2004 capability for the JS Chokai [DDG-176]. Work will be performed at Moorestown, NJ and is expected to be complete by February 2009. The Naval Sea Systems Command, Washington, D.C. is sued the contract (N00024-06-C-6106). See Aug 7/07 Lockheed Martin release.
June 8/07: The US Defense Security Cooperation Agency announces Japan’s formal request [PDF format] request for Ballistic Missile Defense upgrades to one AEGIS Weapon System (Lockheed-Martin Maritime System and Sensors in Moorestown, NJ), AEGIS BMD Vertical Launch System ORDALTs (BAE’s Mk41 modifications, Minneapolis, MN), 9 SM-3 Block IA STANDARD missiles (Raytheon in Tucson, AZ) with MK 21 Mod 2 canisters, containers, spare and repair parts, publications, documentation, supply support, U.S. Government and contractor technical assistance and other related elements of logistics support. The systems will be installed on Japan’s Kongo Class AEGIS destroyers, and the total value, if all options are exercised, could be as high as $475 million. The Japanese destroyer JS Moyoko [DDG-175] may be the target of this request.
The July 25/07 entry strongly suggests that this is for the JDS Chokai [DDG-176], which is the last of the current Kongo Class destroyers.
June 22/06: As North Korea prepares to test-launch a Taepodong-2 ballistic missile reportedly capable of hitting the US mainland, the US & Japan successfully conducted a joint missile intercept test off of Hawaii using the USS Shiloh [CG 67] guided missile cruiser and its upgraded AEGIS radar & combat system, firing an SM-3 missile. The test was the 7th successful intercept in 8 tests during the current program.
The USS Lake Erie [CG 70], USS Paul Hamilton [DDG 60], & USS Milius [DDG 69] also participated, as did the Japanese Kongo Class destroyer JS Kirishima [DDG-174], which has installed AEGIS Long Range surveillance & Tracking 3.0 but no engagement capability. Testing also included receipt of target data on USS Shiloh from a land-based radar, as well as a second CG-47 Class cruiser that used the flight test to collect data and further the development of an upgraded SPY-1B radar with a new signal processor. See Navy News article | Lockheed Martin release.
June 5-6/06: The US DSCA announces a pair of requests from Japan for Standard-family naval air and missile defense systems, as well as destroyer BMD upgrades. The total value, if all options are exercised, could be as high as $528 million. Raytheon, Lockheed, and BAE are the primary contractors.
The first sale for $458 million sale involves 9 longer-range SM-3 missiles plus ballistic missile defense upgrades to one AEGIS Weapon System, AEGIS BMD Vertical Launch System (VLS) alternations, and other support. The JMSDF destroyer JS Chokai [DDG-176] may be the target of the request.
The second sale is for $70 million if all options are exercised, and involves up to 44 shorter-range SM-2 Block IIIB Standard Missiles that serve as the mainstays of the Kongo Class AEGIS destroyers’ air defense, plus various forms of support. See full DID coverage.
July 15/05: Lockheed Martin Maritime Sensors and Systems wins a $124 million cost-plus-award-fee contract modification to upgrade the Japanese AEGIS destroyer JS Kongo [DDG-173] to give it AEGIS Ballistic Missile Defense Block 2004 capability. Japan’s Kongo-Class destroyers are based on the USA’s Flight II DDG 51 Arleigh Burke Class, but feature many modifications both internally and externally.
Work on this contract will take place in Moorestown, NJ (78%); Baltimore, MD (15%); Eagan, MN (4%); and Aberdeen, SD (3%); and should be complete by November 2007. The project was not bid out, but was rather awarded by the Naval Sea Systems Command in Washington, DC under contracting activity N00024-03-C-6110. See also Lockheed release.
June 29/05: The US DSCA communicates [PDF] Japan’s official request for 9 SM-3 Block IA Standard missiles with MK 21 Mod 2 canisters, Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) upgrades to one AEGIS Radar & weapon control system, AEGIS BMD Vertical Launch System ordnance alternations (ORDALTs), containers, spare and repair parts, publications, documentation, supply support, U.S. Government and contractor technical assistance and other related elements of logistics support. The total value, if all options are exercised, could be as high as $387 million.
Sources are unclear, but this could be a request targeted at the first-of-class JS Kongo [DDG-173]. Some reports peg the JS Kirishima [DDG-174] as Japan’s first ship to receive the upgrades – albeit only AEGIS Long Range Surveillance & Tracking version 3.0, which does not include engagement. Since this announcement refers to upgrades that include “AEGIS radar and weapon control,” and the May 5/04 announcement does not, the assumption is that this is targeted to the JS Kongo (aka. Kongou), and the May 2004 request was for the JS Kirishima.
Japan’s agreement to provide fuel/logistics to U.S. and allied ships supporting Operation Enduring Freedom and its deployment of an AEGIS destroyer to the Indian Ocean have focused new obligations on Japan. This proposed sale is consistent with these U.S. objectives and with the 1960 Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security.
The principal contractors will be:
* Lockheed-Martin Maritime System and Sensors in Moorestown, NJ
* Raytheon Company Equipment Division in Andover, MA
* BAE Systems in Minneapolis, MN
There are no known offset agreements proposed in connection with these potential sales.
May 5/04: The US DSCA announces [PDF] Japan’s request for 9 SM-3 Block 1A Standard missiles with MK 21 Mod 2 canisters, Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) upgrades to one AEGIS Weapon System, AEGIS BMD Vertical Launch System ORDALTs and logistics support for an estimated value of $725 million.
* DID – Serious Dollars for AEGIS Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD). Covers American contracts and plans for AEGIS BMD’s evolution, as well as missile defense tests by the USA and Japan to date.
* DID – Raytheon’s Standard Missile Naval Defense Family (SM-1 to SM-6). Note that there are 3 versions of the SM-3 missile, with significant differences between them.
* Naval Technology – Kong? Class Guided Missile Destroyers, Japan
* Wikipedia – Atago class destroyer. A larger (10,000+ ton) variant of the Kongo Class, much as the smaller DDG-51 Flight IIAs are a larger variant of America’s DDG-51 Arleigh Burke Class. There is some debate as to whether this is properly its own class of ship.
* Information Dissemination (June 21/07) – US Navy Ballistic Missile Defense. Well researched article covering the USA’s plans in this area, including ships slated to receive ABM capability.