SACRAMENTO, Calif., Dec. 10, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Aerojet Rocketdyne, a subsidiary of Aerojet Rocketdyne Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AJRD), today announced that its propulsion systems successfully contributed to the destruction of an intermediate range ballistic missile target during the first intercept test of Raytheon's Standard Missile-3 (SM-3) Block IB guided missile from the Aegis Ashore weapon system.
The successful test, termed FTO-02 Event 1, was conducted at the Pacific Missile Range Facility in Kauai, Hawaii. The SM-3 Block IB guided missile was launched from the MK41 Vertical Launching System and used remote track data from an AN/TPY-2 ballistic missile defense radar to help intercept and destroy an intermediate range ballistic missile target on contact.
Aegis Ashore is the land-based component of the Missile Defense Agency's Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) system designed to defend against short-to-intermediate range ballistic missile threats in the mid-course phase of flight. The land-based system uses the Aegis Baseline 9.B1 (BMD 5.0 CU) Weapons System and the same SM-3 missiles deployed on Aegis BMD cruisers and destroyers today.
During the intercept test, Aerojet Rocketdyne's MK 72 booster and MK 104 dual-thrust rocket motor provided the first- and second-stage propulsion for the SM-3 Block IB guided missile, while Aerojet Rocketdyne's innovative Throttling Divert and Attitude Control System (TDACS) maneuvered the kinetic warhead to impact the target.
"This successful intercept test using Aegis Ashore demonstrates the system's flexibility and reliability. It validates SM-3 IB operations using the land basing required for the president's Phased Adaptive Approach for regional missile defense in Europe to protect our deployed forces and our international allies," said Michael Bright, vice president of Aerojet Rocketdyne's Missile Defense and Strategic Systems Business Unit. "I cannot think of more difficult mission scenarios than missile defense. It requires precision and coordination during the design, development, production and operations, unlike any other space mission. This successful test follows just a day after the successful SM-3 IIA CTV-02 flight test which demonstrated the capability of our next generation TDACS. It is a credit to our partnership with Raytheon and the engineering talent at Aerojet Rocketdyne that we continue to demonstrate success for these demanding missions."
In concert with Raytheon, Aerojet Rocketdyne is developing the next generation of sea- and land-based U.S. missile defense capabilities by providing reliable, low-risk propulsion technologies. In addition to the current production of first and second stage MK 72 and MK 104 rocket motors and the SM-3 Block IB solid propellant TDACS, or maneuvering stage, the company is developing the TDACS for SM-3 Block IIA.
"Our team is proud of the continued 100 percent mission success record of Aerojet Rocketdyne's missile defense products," said Carlos Meraz, Aerojet Rocketdyne's Standard Missile-3 Block IB TDACS senior program director. "The TDACS provides innovative yet affordable technology that is vital in the protection of our country and our allies."
Aerojet Rocketdyne is an innovative company delivering solutions that create value for its customers in the aerospace and defense markets. The company is a world-recognized aerospace and defense leader that provides propulsion and energetics to the space, missile defense and strategic systems, tactical systems and armaments areas, in support of domestic and international markets. Additional information about Aerojet Rocketdyne can be obtained by visiting our websites at www.Rocket.com and www.AerojetRocketdyne.com.