SACRAMENTO, Calif., Sept. 18, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Aerojet Rocketdyne, a GenCorp (NYSE:GY) company, announced today that its propulsion systems successfully contributed to the first attempted and successful salvo engagement of two Raytheon Standard Missile-3 (SM-3) Block IB guided missiles against a ballistic missile target.

The SM-3 Block IB guided missile is part of the Missile Defense Agency's Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) second generation Weapon System. During Flight Test Standard Missile-21 (FTM-21), the naval missiles intercepted and destroyed a separating ballistic missile target in the first operational test event for the SM-3 Block IB guided missile.

Aerojet Rocketdyne's MK 72 booster and MK 104 dual-thrust rocket motor provided the first- and second-stage propulsion, while Aerojet Rocketdyne's Throttling Divert and Attitude Control System (TDACS) maneuvered the kinetic warhead to impact the target.

This test marked the first intercept where two SM-3 Block IB guided missiles were fired at a single target.

The SM-3 Block IB guided missiles will be deployed on Aegis BMD cruisers and destroyers, and also on land sites as part of the Aegis Ashore component, to defend against short-to-intermediate range ballistic missile threats in the mid-course phase of flight. Raytheon is the prime contractor for SM‑3 development.

"Aerojet Rocketdyne is proud of our continued record of mission success and the reliability of our SM-3 products. The boosters have proven themselves over the years and now that same success is being realized on the TDACS," said Aerojet Rocketdyne Vice President of Missile Defense and Strategic Systems, Michael Bright. "Our team is focused on results and we owe much of our success to the strong partnership and technology exchange we have with Raytheon and the government customer. Our customers' focus on systems engineering of this missile is what makes it successful. We are proud to play a key role in the success of such a critical national defense program."

In concert with Raytheon, Aerojet Rocketdyne is developing the third generation of naval and land-based U.S. missile defense capabilities by providing reliable, low-risk propulsion technologies. In addition to the current production of MK 72 and MK 104 rocket motors and the SM-3 Block IB TDACS, the company is developing the TDACS for SM-3 Block IIA, the planned missile variant upgrade to the current SM-3 Blocks IA and IB guided missiles.

Aerojet Rocketdyne is a world-recognized aerospace and defense leader providing propulsion and energetics to the space, missile defense and strategic systems, tactical systems and armaments areas, in support of domestic and international markets. GenCorp is a diversified company that provides innovative solutions that create value for its customers in the aerospace and defense, energy and real estate markets. Additional information about Aerojet Rocketdyne and GenCorp can be obtained by visiting the companies' websites at and