Tag Archives: Aegis Ashore

Aegis Ashore

In a landmark demonstration, Lockheed Martin connected key components of its Aegis Ashore and Long Range Discrimination Radar (LRDR) technologies, validating the ability to greatly increase operational performance, efficiency and reliability of Aegis Ashore.

Aegis Ashore configured with Lockheed Martin Solid State Radar provides greatly increased performance
Aegis Ashore configured with Lockheed Martin Solid State Radar provides greatly increased performance

«Connecting these systems is more than a technological advantage – it’s a way to provide the warfighter with earlier intelligence and expanded situational awareness», said Doctor Tony DeSimone, vice president and chief engineer of Lockheed Martin Integrated Warfare Systems and Sensors. «Integration of these technologies allows us to deliver the most advanced solid-state radar system in LRDR with the proven tested capability of Aegis. For the warfighter this combination provides an increased capability, in terms of additional performance and reaction time, to safely protect the people and nations they defend».

Connecting the two mature systems, amounts to a low risk ‘technology refresh’ of the legacy SPY-1 antenna, resulting in:

  • Ability to detect targets at longer distances;
  • Ability to combat larger numbers of targets simultaneously;
  • Additional target engagement opportunities;
  • Higher performance in complicated land environments;
  • Minimized interference with civilian or military radio emitters and receivers;
  • Increased use of the new SM-3 Block IIA missile’s performance.

Lockheed Martin Solid State Radar (SSR) is a scalable Gallium Nitride (GaN) based radar building block, which in addition to cutting edge performance provides increased efficiency and reliability. The Department of Defense’s newest Ballistic Missile Defense sensor, LRDR, will use thousands of Lockheed Martin SSR building blocks to provide enhanced target acquisition, tracking and discrimination data to the U.S. Ballistic Missile Defense System. LRDR completed its critical design review in 2017 and is on track to be operational in Alaska in 2020.

Aegis Ashore is the land-based ballistic missile defense adaptation of the proven Aegis Combat System, currently fielded in Romania and soon to be fielded in Poland.

The research and development demonstration proved that current and future versions of Aegis can simultaneously command tasking of the Lockheed Martin SSR and receive target tracks from the radar. The next phase of activity is to demonstrate simulated missile engagements with live tracking, scheduled for the first half of 2018. These tests build on multiple previous demonstrations in 2015 and 2016, in which Aegis software variant Baseline 9 already tracked live targets using a prototype version of Lockheed Martin SSR hardware powered by multi-purpose Fujitsu GaN from Japan.

The Aegis software has evolved over time and is now compatible with multiple radars. Recently, Australia and Spain selected Aegis configurations featuring their own solid-state radars. Weaving existing systems together is becoming more common to stay ahead of threats efficiently, by leveraging prior or concurrent investments in advanced technology.

«The Aegis Combat System is adaptable and flexible to address warfighting needs, which is one of the reasons the system is so widely used around the world», said Michele Evans, vice president and general manager of Lockheed Martin Integrated Warfare Systems and Sensors. «As our customers look to update their technology with the help of their industrial bases, they are increasingly choosing alternative radars to equip their platforms. In challenging threat environments, we can deliver advanced capability at lower cost if we can be flexible and connect a variety of existing technologies».

Lockheed Martin SSR, including very robust participation from Japanese industry, is one of the configuration options available to Japan for its upcoming Aegis Ashore installations. Because Lockheed Martin provides the Aegis Ashore software and SPY-1 radar, its SSR can operate in a way that uses a common Integrated Air and Missile Defense Aegis baseline with the one recently purchased by Japan’s Ministry of Defense for its new destroyers.

Aegis Site in Poland

United States and Polish officials commemorated the start of the construction phase of an Aegis Ashore Missile Defense System (AAMDS) complex during a ceremony in Redzikowo, Poland on May 13.

The U.S. Navy achieved operational certification of the Aegis Ashore site at Deveselu Air Base in Romania. This officially fulfills Phase II of the European Phased Adaptive Approach, a plan to protect deployed U.S. forces and our European allies from ballistic missile attack (Photo courtesy Missile Defense Agency)
The U.S. Navy achieved operational certification of the Aegis Ashore site at Deveselu Air Base in Romania. This officially fulfills Phase II of the European Phased Adaptive Approach, a plan to protect deployed U.S. forces and our European allies from ballistic missile attack (Photo courtesy Missile Defense Agency)

«Our partnership with Poland and Romania underwrites U.S. military activities in the region and reflects our steadfast commitment to enhancing regional security», said Robert Work, Deputy Secretary of Defense, «countering the threat of ballistic missile attacks from outside the Euro-Atlantic area is a collective security challenge that requires collective defense».

Aegis Ashore, a critical part of the European Phased Adaptive Approach (EPAA), is a land-based capability of the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) System constructed to defend NATO populations, territory, and forces against ballistic missile threats from outside the Euro-Atlantic area. The EPAA concept is the U.S.’s multi-phase effort to support NATO BMD, which includes for using BMD-capable Aegis ships, Aegis Ashore Missile Defense sites, a forward deployed radar in Turkey, and a command and control network located at Ramstein Air Base (AB), Germany.

The commencement of construction on the site in Poland represents a key milestone to complete Phase III of the EPAA. U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa/U.S. 6th Fleet recognized another key milestone toward completion of Phase II of the EPAA by deeming the AAMDS in Romania as operationally certified in a ceremony held at Naval Support Facility Deveselu, May 12.

The BMD complex at Redzikowo will consist of a fire-control radar deckhouse with an associated Aegis command, control and communications suite. Separately, it will house several launch modules containing Standard Missile 3 (SM-3) missiles. Once complete, the Aegis Ashore BMD site in Poland will host the upgraded SM-3 Block IIA. The delivery of this improved weapons system, and the increased BMD infrastructure under EPAA, will improve the defensive coverage against medium- and intermediate-range threats.

«Aegis Ashore reflects the strength of our relationship as Allies and our resolve in promoting security and close regional cooperation in Europe», added Work. «This enhancement marks another milestone and is consistent with the enduring partnership between the U.S., Poland and Romania. The Department of Defense looks forward to continued work with our NATO allies in developing BMD».

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Europe District is managing the project. Two major construction contracts for missile defense and Navy support facilities in Redzikowo were awarded this year. Naval Support Facility (NSF) Redzikowo is expected to be established in fall of 2016 and will host the missile defense complex and supporting personnel when it opens in 2018. Technical capability of the U.S. BMD complex is expected to be delivered in the 2018 timeframe.

Ballistic Missile Defense System Overview
Ballistic Missile Defense System Overview

Romanian Aegis site

On May 12 United States and Romania held a ribbon-cutting ceremony in Deveselu, Romania marking the operational certification of the U.S. Aegis Ashore Missile Defense System, a key milestone in European based missile defence.

The Aegis Ashore Missile Defense System is part of the European Phased Adapted Approach, designed to protect European NATO allies, and U.S. deployed forces in the region, against current and emerging ballistic threats
The Aegis Ashore Missile Defense System is part of the European Phased Adapted Approach, designed to protect European NATO allies, and U.S. deployed forces in the region, against current and emerging ballistic threats

The Aegis Ashore Missile Defense System (AAMDS) has many of the same components used at sea on guided-missile destroyers and cruisers, but has been adapted to perform the ballistic missile defense mission from land. In this case, Aegis ashore is in Deveselu, Romania. It’s part of the European Phased Adapted Approach (EPAA). EPAA is designed to protect European NATO allies, and U.S. deployed forces in the region, against current and emerging ballistic threats from the Middle East. In general, the ballistic missile threat to the region is growing both quantitatively and qualitatively. The EPAA’s purpose is to help deter future conflicts, primarily those from Iran and other nefarious non-state actors – and to defend ourselves and our NATO allies should deterrence fail.

AAMDS-Romania will have successfully completed operational validation as part of the EPAA Phase II architecture. This was accomplished through participation in the Cross area of responsibility Air and Missile Defense Exercise (CAMDEX) 2016. It is significant as CAMDEX 2016 is a unifying concept for exercise events designed to assist NATO in preparing for their Initial Operational Capability (IOC) of AAMDS-Romania.

The land-based ballistic missile defense system is designed to detect, track, engage, and destroy ballistic missiles in flight.

If launched, the interceptor flies out above the atmosphere and destroys the enemy ballistic missile warhead in flight.

SM-3 missiles are defensive weapons. They carry no explosive warheads of any type, and rely on their kinetic energy to collide with and destroy incoming enemy ballistic missile warheads.

The system in Romania is connected to other EPAA missile defense assets to maximize their effectiveness.

Missile defense and the EPAA assets are strictly defensive in nature. The U.S. interceptors are not armed with an explosive warhead of any kind. Instead, the interceptor collides with the threat warhead and relies on energy derived from the collision of two objects moving at incredible speeds to neutralize the threat. The interceptors have no capability as an offensive weapon.

 

File video depicting inside the Aegis Ashore Missile Defense System (AAMDS) the deckhouse and a Vertical Launch System (VLS) at Naval Support Facility Deveselu, Romania

First Intercept Test

The Missile Defense Agency (MDA) and the Ballistic Missile Defense System (BMDS) Operational Test Agency, in conjunction with U.S. Pacific Command, U.S. European Command, and Joint Functional Component Command for Integrated Missile Defense, successfully conducted the first intercept flight test today (December 9, Hawaii Standard Time) of a land-based Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) weapon system and SM-3 (Standard Missile) Block IB Threat Upgrade guided missile, launched from the Aegis Ashore Missile Defense Test Complex at the Pacific Missile Range Facility (PMRF), Kauai, Hawaii.

The deckhouse for the Aegis Ashore system at the Pacific Missile Range Facility
The deckhouse for the Aegis Ashore system at the Pacific Missile Range Facility

During the test, a target representing a medium-range ballistic missile was air-launched from a U.S. Air Force C-17 aircraft over the broad ocean area southwest of Hawaii. An AN/TPY-2 radar in Forward Based Mode, located at PMRF, detected the target and relayed target track information to the Command, Control, Battle Management, and Communication (C2BMC) system. The Aegis Weapon System at the Aegis Ashore site received track data from C2BMC and used its component AN/SPY-1 radar to acquire, track, and develop a fire control solution to engage the target. The Aegis Weapon System then launched the SM-3 Block IB Threat Upgrade guided missile from its Vertical Launch System. The SM-3’s kinetic warhead acquired the target reentry vehicle, diverted into its path, and destroyed the target using the kinetic force of a direct impact.

The primary purpose of the test, designated Flight Test Operational-02 Event 1a, was to assess the operational effectiveness of the Aegis Ashore capability as part of a larger BMDS architecture.  Aegis Ashore uses a nearly identical configuration of the Vertical Launch System, fire control system, and SPY-1 radar currently in use aboard Aegis BMD cruisers and destroyers deployed at sea around the world.

Vice Admiral James D. Syring, MDA Director, said, «Today’s test demonstrated that the same Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense capability that has been fielded at sea and operational for years, will soon be operational ashore as part of the European Phased Adaptive Approach (EPAA) Phase 2 capability in Romania. I am very proud of the tremendous effort by the entire government/industry team in executing this vitally important mission for our Nation and our allies».

This flight test demonstrates Aegis Ashore capability as an important component of Phase 2 of the EPAA, of which MDA plans to announce a technical capability declaration by the end of this month.

The MDA and the U.S. Navy cooperatively manage the Aegis BMD program.

 

Interceptors Ashore

Lockheed Martin is studying adding an Anti-Air Warfare (AAW) to Aegis Ashore Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) sites, reported Sam LaGrone, USNI News editor. The studies are not in advance of a new program of record for modifications of the installations and are at the behest of the Missile Defense Agency, said Jim Sheridan, Director of AEGIS development for Lockheed Martin in a briefing to reporters ahead of the Navy League Sea-Air-Space Exposition 2015.

Aegis Ashore provides a proven, affordable solution to expand the protection of the Aegis Combat System to inland areas
Aegis Ashore provides a proven, affordable solution to expand the protection of the Aegis Combat System to inland areas

«There’s been some detailed discussion over the past couple of years about the possibility of reconstituting or adding an AAW capability to the Aegis Ashore configuration», Jim Sheridan told reporters. «We’ve been turned on to do some studies on what it would take to do that going forward in the future».

Aegis Ashore – created in conjunction with Missile Defense Agency (MDA) and the Navy – uses the SPY-1D radar and the Mk-41 Vertical Launch System (VLS) tubes native to the Navy’s Arleigh Burke guided missile destroyers (DDG-51) to detect and launch Standard Missile-3 (SM-3) interceptors to counter ballistic missile threats.

Since most of the hardware is the same, Jim Sheridan said it would not be difficult to reconfigure the installations in Poland and Romania: «There is no program of record to reconstitute or add AAW capabilities to the Aegis Ashore configuration, but they’re just asking in the event in the future, what it would take to do that. We think it would not be difficult because that’s the same configuration we’re delivering to destroyers today».

Aegis Ashore is the land-based component of the Ballistic Missile Defense System and will use the same components that will be used onboard the Navy’s new construction Aegis BMD Destroyers
Aegis Ashore is the land-based component of the Ballistic Missile Defense System and will use the same components that will be used onboard the Navy’s new construction Aegis BMD Destroyers

It is said in The NavyTimes that a 430-acre (174 hectare) Aegis Ashore facility will be operational by year’s end in Deveselu, Romania, and manned by about 200 U.S. service members, government civilians and support contractors. It will be armed with SM-3 IB interceptors. A second site planned for Poland, scheduled to become operational in 2018, will be armed with SM-3 IIA interceptors.

The SM-3 Cooperative Development Program focuses on joint U.S. and Japan development of a 21-inch diameter variant of the SM-3 missile, referred to as SM-3 Block IIA. Aegis BMD 5.1 will integrate the SM-3 Block IIA missile into the combat system. Data links will also be improved to enable Engage on Remote track data. Deployment begins in 2018.

SM-3 Block IIA guided missile development completed Critical Design Review and successfully conducted a Propulsion Test Vehicle (PTV) flight test. The PTV round consisted of a live booster with an inert 21-inch diameter upper-stage assembly encanisted in a Vertical Launch System canister.

The deckhouse for the Aegis Ashore system at the Pacific Missile Range Facility. This is the test asset for the Aegis Ashore system that will be emplaced in Romania and Poland (Missile Defense Agency Photo)
The deckhouse for the Aegis Ashore system at the Pacific Missile Range Facility. This is the test asset for the Aegis Ashore system that will be emplaced in Romania and Poland (Missile Defense Agency Photo)

 

Aegis Ashore

Aegis Ashore is a land-based capability of the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense System to address the evolving ballistic missile security environment. The re-locatable deckhouse is equipped with the Aegis BMD weapon system and Standard Missile-3, with upgrades being phased during this decade. Each Aegis BMD upgrade provides increased capability for countering ballistic missile threats. In addition to Aegis BMD ships, Aegis Ashore is part of Phased Adaptive Approach (PAA) Phases II and III.

 

Development

Uses the same combat system elements (AN/SPY-1 Radar, Command, Control, Communications, Computers and Intelligence systems, Vertical Launching System, computer processors, display system, power supplies and cooling) that are used onboard the Navy’s new construction Aegis BMD Destroyers.

Conducting flight tests at the Aegis Ashore Missile Defense Test Complex at Pacific Missile Range Facility (PMRF) in Kauai, Hawaii. Each test will increase the operational realism and complexity of targets and scenarios and will be witnessed by Navy and Department of Defense test agents.

Integrates advances in sensor technology such as launch of an SM-3 missile in response to remote sensor data.

Defeats short- to intermediate-range ballistic missile threats.

Incorporates future capability upgrades in association with Aegis BMD Program of Record.

The Aegis Ashore deckhouse during a Missile Defense Agency and U.S. Navy test from Kauai, Hawaii
The Aegis Ashore deckhouse during a Missile Defense Agency and U.S. Navy test from Kauai, Hawaii

 

Aegis Ashore Missile Defense Test Complex (AAMDTC)

The AAMDTC at the PMRF is a test and evaluation center in the development of the PAA. The test complex leverages the Aegis BMD Weapon System and the new SM-3 Block IB missile for PAA Phase II deployment, as well as, supports deployment decisions and upgrades of future PAA Phase capabilities.

The AAMDTC fired the first land-based SM-3 Block IB missile in May 2014.

 

Deployment

In 2015, Aegis Ashore will be installed in Romania as part of the PAA Phase II. This deployed capability will use Aegis BMD 5.0 CU and SM-3 Block IB to provide ballistic missile coverage of southern Europe.

In 2018, Aegis Ashore will be installed in Poland, as part of the PAA Phase III. This deployed capability will use Aegis BMD 5.1 and SM-3 Blocks IB and IIA to support increased additional defense of Europe.

 

Future Capabilities

Engagement of longer range ballistic missiles.

 

Land-based Aegis Ashore, as part of Phased Adaptive Approach (PAA), will use the same components as those onboard the Navy’s new construction Aegis BMD Destroyers