Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Evolutionary success; SSN AAW

This is the way to do it right.
A Raytheon-led team successfully launched an AIM-9X from a stationary, vertical platform last November. The missile successfully locked on after launch and hit its target in a test of its potential launch from a submarine. The test was conducted for the Naval Sea Systems Command at the U.S. Army's McGregor Test Range in New Mexico Nov. 19, 2005.

A successful test firing matures the technology that will provide the Navy with a new capability when the Joint Battlespace is near the coast at a fraction of the cost of developing a new weapon system. The new system is an existing launch capability married to a proven weapon fired from a submarine at periscope depth.

"This is very exciting," said Dan Smith, president of Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems. "In partnering with the Navy and Northrop Grumman, our team has been able to take an already proven off-the-shelf weapon, make software modifications, use existing launch technology, and give the combatant commander another option in the coastal Joint Battlespace.

"The implications of this first phase test are far-reaching. It provides the Navy with a low-cost solution with a high-impact capability in its approach to littoral warfare without having to go through a costly and lengthy R&D process."
...and the money quote...
"We chose the AIM-9X because it's a well-known reliable and mature missile and we didn't want to spend this effort on proving the missile would work. We wanted to spend the effort proving we could launch it out of a submarine," Sharp said."

Hat tip Mike.

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