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Emerging Capabilities

Defending against new threats

Aegis BMD integrating sensors to provide enhanced capabilities to the fleet

FTM-22 The USS Lake Erie (CG 70) launches a Standard Missile-3 (SM-3) Block 1B missile during a Missile Defense Agency and U.S. Navy test Oct. 4, 2013. Photo courtesy MDA.

In its second test in two months, Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) continued to demonstrate its capabilities to defend against the world’s increasingly sophisticated ballistic missile threats. The Missile Defense Agency, U.S. Navy and Lockheed Martin team achieved the intercept of a medium-range ballistic missile target over the Pacific Ocean during Flight Test Mission-22 (FTM-22) on October 4.

Aegis built on the success of last month’s test by successfully launching, tracking, and engaging the newest medium range ballistic missile target configuration during the test. FTM-22 marked the eleventh time the USS Lake Erie (CG 70) and her crew have successfully performed during at-sea test events against cruise and ballistic missile threats using Aegis BMD and the Standard Missile-3 (SM-3) Block IB missile.

“This new threat scenario represented the potential threats that we’re facing in today’s defense environment – and this latest Aegis BMD mission success, run by the sailors of the USS Lake Erie, demonstrated the readiness of our missile defense capabilities to take on those threats,” said Nick Bucci, director of BMD development programs. “As the targets and threat scenarios become more advanced, our Aegis BMD system is keeping pace with innovative solutions to safeguard our global security.”

This particular scenario used the Aegis BMD 4.0.X configuration, which enables the Navy to quickly defeat sophisticated ballistic missile threats by integrating sensors from space, land and sea for persistent and reliable detection.

Posted October 4, 2013; Updated October 7, 2013