Cobham components from Antenna Systems and Defense Electronics are critically important to the US Navy’s Aegis radar-equipped surface combatants armed with SM-3 missiles capable of providing ballistic missile defense
Cobham components from Antenna Systems and Defense Electronics
are critically important to the US Navy's Aegis radar-equipped
surface combatants armed with SM-3 missiles capable of providing
ballistic missile defense. Those components include antennas, dual
band rotary couplers, RF cabling, and waveguides used by the
AN/SPY1D radar, and front end modules and uplink receivers in the
missile's datalink that enable the SM-3 to receive in-flight target
Image and article courtesy of the US
USS LAKE ERIE, At Sea (NNS) -- The Navy's Aegis Ballistic
Missile Defense System scored another hit for the Missile Defense
Agency on the Pacific Missile Range overnight, marking the first
live-fire intercept of a medium-range ballistic missile using
Flight Test Mission-20 successfully demonstrated again the
system's capability to detect the target from outer space and
launch a sea-based Standard Missile from an Aegis-equipped Navy
ship, all based on track data from satellite sensors orbiting
"This was a great feat for our Navy and our nation as we move
forward in the next step of ballistic missile defense," said Capt.
Eric Ver Hage, commanding officer of the Naval Surface Warfare
Center, Corona Division, a Naval Sea Systems Command field activity
in Norco, Calif. "As a former ship CO, it's awesome to see the
collaborative assessment team here at the Joint Warfare Assessment
Lab supporting ships at sea."
With the extended sensor network from space, MDA and Sailors
aboard USS Lake Erie (CG 70) executed the Launch on Remote doctrine
and destroyed the target with Standard Missile-3 Block 1A (SM-3 1A)
guided missile. The missile vaporized the target following a
direct-hit minutes after its launch from the Pacific Missile Range
Facility on Kauai, Hawaii, at 4:10 a.m. (EST).
For the test, NSWC Corona installed a mini-KU band antenna
aboard Lake Erie to transmit large amounts of performance data from
the cruiser's second-generation Aegis weapon system to the Navy's
JWAL in Southern California. There, the assessment team of program
managers, industry and analysts from warfare center divisions at
Corona, Port Hueneme and Dahlgren provided remote analysis of the
The small, portable antenna reduced data transmission time from
days to an hour - significantly shortening feedback time to ships
at sea and enabling rapid assessment and feedback that is essential
to helping MDA meet emerging threats, Ver Hage said.
According to MDA, the threat of a ballistic missile reaching
either the U.S. or forward deployed forces - especially one armed
with a weapon of mass destruction - benefits most from a layered
defense that utilizes both sea- and land-based interceptors and
radars, as well as space-based sensors. All branches of the Armed
Forces play a role.
To counter future projected threats, the advanced capability of
MDA's space tracking system demonstrators extends the battlespace
and provides the ability for longer range intercepts and defense of
larger areas. The defense agency demonstrated the first successful
use of its space-based sensors in April 2011 during FTM-15, when
the STSSD satellites successfully acquired the target missile and
provided stereo "birth to death" tracking of the target.
"Integration of space-based sensors into the next-generation
defense system allows for detection and tracking of threats up
close and over a much larger area than ground-based assets alone,"
said MDA spokesman Rick Lehner.
He added, that by using different space-, land-, and sea-based
assets operated by multiple Services, the Combatant Commanders have
the best sensor information on a threat's location and a more
diverse and effective set of weapon options to defeat an attack.
The unified Command and Control, Battle Management, and
Communications system connects all the components, he said.
Having been involved in Navy surface-ship guided missile tests
for decades, NSWC Corona began work on Aegis when it was just a
concept more than 40 years ago. The Secretary of the Navy
established the science and engineering command in 1964 to provide
assessment of performance, reliability, readiness and effectiveness
of the Navy's missile systems.
Today, as the Navy's independent assessment agent, NSWC Corona
gauges the warfighting capability of weapons and integrated combat
systems, through assessment of system performance, readiness,
quality, and supportability, as well as the adequacy of training.
The base is home to three premier laboratories and assessment
centers: the Joint Warfare Assessment Lab, the Measurement Science
and Technology Lab, and the Daugherty Memorial Assessment Center,
dedicated to fallen Sailor Petty Officer 1st Class Steven P.
Space-Based Sensors Star in "Stellar Eyes" Missile
By Troy Clarke, Naval Surface Warfare Center Corona Public