The Navy's Standard Missile Program Executive Office and Raytheon Missile Systems have reported that the company has completed successful demonstrations of a new maneuverability upgrade for the SM-2 Block 1MB air-defense missile, another in a long series of performance improvements for the Standard missile family. The upgrade will be incorporated into missiles already deployed to Ticonderoga- and Arleigh Burke-class Aegis cruisers and destroyers.
Those ships currently are armed with SM-2 Block III A and B. and Block IV ER (extended range) missiles, all of which are launched from the Mk 41 vertical launching system (VLS). Raytheon says the Block 1MB maneuverability upgrade "met all test objectives throughout a sequence of high-G maneuvers" during a late-2006 llight test at the White Sands Missile Range. New Mexico.
The Block II1B upgrade complements enhancements recently completed for the Block IV ER variant, which include such components as a new steering control section, thrust vector actuator assembly for the boost rocket motor, primary missile battery, and improved guidance and control software.