The U.S. Navy conducted its first live-fire test with the Raytheon Company’s SeaRAM system installed aboard a guided missile destroyer, according to a Raytheon news release.
During the July test, USS Carney (DDG 64) used its SeaRam system to detect, track and successfully engage an inbound BQM-74E target with a RAM Block II missile.
“SeaRAM adds an important layer of defense to the Rota, Spain DDGs and can provide protection to many naval ships facing today’s most worrisome threats.”
“These test results are evidence of our strong partnership with the U.S. Navy that is working to rapidly deliver solutions to protect our warfighters,” said Rick Nelson, vice president of Raytheon’s Naval Area and Mission Defense product line. “SeaRAM adds an important layer of defense to the Rota, Spain DDGs and can provide protection to many naval ships facing today’s most worrisome threats.”
Carney is one of four Rota, Spain-based Arleigh Burke-class destroyers that will have SeaRAM installed as an anti-ship missile defense system. The four destroyers are based in the 6th Fleet area of operations as ballistic missile defense ships. The ships are having SeaRAM installed to protect against anti-ship missile threats because the BMD mission means the radar energy from the Aegis system’s SPY radar is focused on searching in space for incoming ballistic missiles. While Aegis Baseline 9 will allow ships to operate simultaneously in BMD and traditional anti-air and anti-cruise missile defense modes, the four Rota-based BMD ships have not yet received that upgrade to their Aegis systems.
SeaRAM combines the Phalanx Close In Weapons System and the Rolling Airframe Missile (RAM). It employs the Phalanx Block 1B sensors and mount but replaces the 20mm rotary cannon with an 11-round RAM launcher. Thus far USS Porter (DDG 78) and Carney have had the system installed, replacing the aft CIWS mount. USS Ross (DDG 71) and USS Donald Cook (DDG 75) are slated to receive the system in 2107.