U.S. Missile Defense Test Record

August 10, 2017

Ballistic Missile Defense Intercept Flight Test Record

Overall Test Record

  • 77 of 94 hit-to-kill intercept attempts have been successful across all programs since the integrated system began development in 2001
  • 52 of 65 hit-to-kill intercepts for THAAD, Aegis BMD and GMD since 2001
  • Includes Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD), Ground-based Midcourse Defense (GMD), Terminal HighAltitude Area Defense (THAAD), and PATRIOT Advanced Capability-3

View MDA Test Record Here

 

Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense Testing Record

Hits Misses No Test Due to: Target Failure Success % Total
Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense Testing
SM-2 Block IV 4 0 0 100% 4
SM-3 1 0 0 100% 1
SM-3-0 4 1 0 80% 5
SM-3 Block I 2 1 0 67% 3
SM-3 Block IA 13 2 0  87% 15
SM-3 Block IIA 1 1 0  50% 2
SM-3 Block IB 7 2 2 63% 11
SM-6 Dual I 3 0 0 100% 3
Total (All Systems) 35 7 2 80% 44

SM-2 Block IV

May 2006 Successful Intercept Test

July 29, 2015 – The SM-2 Block IV was successful at intercepting a short-range ballistic missile.

March 26, 2009 –  This mission was successful following the simultaneous engagement of a short-range ballistic missile in terminal phase and a cruise missile. Both targets were intercepted.

June 5, 2008 – The SM-2 Block IV successfully intercepted a terminal phase target launched from a mobile launch platform.

May 24, 2006 – This test marked the first sea-based intercept of a ballistic missile in its terminal phase by the SM-2 Block IV.

SM-3

August 31, 2007 – This test was considered a successful classified flight test.

SM-3-0

November 2002 SM-0 Successful Test Launch

December 11, 2003 –  This mission tested a new modification to the interceptor to allow it to function with reduced capability. This mission produced another successful intercept.

June 18, 2003 – This test failed when the interceptor’s divert and altitude control malfunctioned. This was the first failure of this model.

November 21, 2002 – This test was deemed a success after the missile’s Kinetic Warhead acquired, tracked, and diverted into the target. This marked the third successful intercept for the SM-3-0.

June 13, 2002 – Aegis SM-3-0 succeeded in intercepting a unitary target missile, marking the completion of the Aegis LEAP Intercept Program.

January 25, 2002 – Although this mission did not require an intercept to be successful, the interceptor still collided with the test target. It was the first successful interception of a ballistic missile fired from a sea-based platform.

SM-3 Block I

November 2005 Successful Intercept test

November 1, 2008 –  This test had mixed results. One target was successfully intercepted, while the second one was not.

November 17, 2005 – This was the first mission to utilize a target missile with a separating warhead more closely resembling a real-world threat. The SM-3 Block I was not fooled and still managed a successful intercept.

February 24, 2005 – This flight test marked the first test of the SM-3 Block 1, which yet again demonstrated the system’s ability to destroy an enemy ballistic missile.

SM-3 Block IA

October 20, 2015 – The SM-3 Block IA was successful at intercepting a target launched from the UK’s Hebrides Range, northwest of Scotland.

September 10, 2013 – The purpose of this test was to show that the Aegis and THAAD could work together in a layered defense system. Both intercepts proved successful.

February 12, 2013 – Using the Space Tracking Surveillance System and Launch on Remote capabilities, the interceptor successfully destroyed a medium-range ballistic missile target.

October 25, 2012 – This test failed when the interceptor suffered Inertial Measurement Unit Failure.

April 14, 2011 – This marked the first Aegis BMD successful intercept against a separating intermediate-range target. This was also the first test relying on remote tracking data.

July 2009 SM-3 Block IA Successful Intercept Test

October 28, 2010 – The SM-3 Block IA successfully intercepted a target over the Pacific Ocean after developing a fire control solution.

October 27, 2009 – This test was a joint action by the US and Japan, where the Pacific Missile Range Facility fired the target and a Japanese destroyer fired the interceptor. The test produced another successful intercept.

July 30, 2009 – This test proved a success when the SM-3 Block IA intercepted a sub-scale short range ballistic missile.

November 19, 2008 – This test failed when the interceptor’s divert and altitude control malfunctioned. This was the first failure of this model.

December 2007 SM-3 Block IA Successful Intercept Test

December 17, 2007 – This test provided a successful intercept by the SM-3 Block IA missile off the coast of Kauai Island. The missile intercepted a ballistic missile target outside of the atmosphere.

November 6, 2007 – This test achieved the first-ever double-interception of ballistic missile targets outside of the atmosphere.

June 22, 2007 –  The SM-3 Block IA successfully performed a “hit-to-kill” intercept of a separating, medium range ballistic missile.

April 26, 2007 – This test marked the 8th successful intercept of the Aegis BMD. The SM-3 Block IA successfully tracked and intercepted a ballistic missile target.

June 22, 2006 – This was the first test of the SM-3 Block IA. This test was deemed a success after the kinetic warhead tracked and intercepted the target.

SM-3 Block IIA

February 2017 Successful Intercept Test

June 21, 2017 – During this test the SM-3 Block IIA was successful in detecting and tracking the target missile, but a successful intercept was not made. This test was deemed unsuccessful by the Missile Defense Agency and the Japan Ministry of Defense.

February 3, 2017 – This test was the first successful test of the newest version of the Standard Missile 3, the SM-3 Block IIA.

SM-3 Block IB

December 10, 2015 – This test was the first intercept flight test of a land-based Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) weapon system and the SM-3 Block IB Threat Upgrade guided missile. This successful test proved that the Aegis BMD capabilities will soon be operational on land as well as at sea.

November 1, 2015 – The reasons behind this failure are unknown. The failure review is ongoing.

October 4, 2015 – This is considered a ‘no-test’ because the target malfunctioned and the interceptor was not launched.

June 25, 2015 – This is considered a ‘no-test’ because the target malfunctioned and the interceptor was not launched.

SM-3 Block IB Successful Intercept Test

November 6, 2014 –  This was marked a success when a short-range missile was successfully intercepted by the SM-3 Block IB.

October 3, 2013 – This marked the 28th successful flight test since the beginning of Aegis flight testing in 2002.

September 18, 2013 – This was a successful test that was meant to be operationally realistic. The target’s launch time and bearing were not known beforehand, but the SM-3 Block IB still made a successful intercept.

May 15, 2013 – This test was considered a success when the SM-3 Block IB intercepted a target while using an updated version of the Aegis BMD Weapons System, which would provide capability for engagement of longer-range ballistic missiles.

June 26, 2012 – This was the second consecutive successful intercept by the SM-3 Block IB.

December 2016 SM-6 Dual I Successful Intercept Test

May 9, 2012 – This marked the first successful intercept of a short-range ballistic missile target by the SM-3 Block IB.

September 1, 2011 – This test failed when the interceptor suffered third stage rocket motor pulse failure.

SM-6 Dual 1

August 29, 2017 – This test marked the second time the SM-6 Dual 1 intercepted a complicated medium range ballistic missile target and was the third successful test of the SM-6.

December 14, 2016 – The second successful test of the SM-6 Dual 1 proved it was able to intercept a complicated medium range ballistic missile target.

July 28, 2016 – This was the first test of the SM-6 Dual 1 and was successful when the missile intercepted a target in its terminal phase.

 

Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) Testing Record

Hits Misses No Test Due to: Target Failure Success % Total
Ground-Based Tests
THAAD Interceptor 15 0 4 100% 19
Total (All Systems) 15 0 4 100% 19

 

July 2017 Successful THAAD Intercept Test

July 30, 2017 – A THAAD missile intercepted its target continuing the perfect record for THAAD missile defense system tests.

July 11, 2017 – A THAAD missile successfully intercepted a target missile launched from an Air Force Cargo Plane north of Hawaii.

November 1, 2015 – This test provided a successful salvo/dual intercept. Both targets were intercepted and destroyed.

October 4, 2015 – This event was considered a “no-test” when the target malfunctioned after launch. The interceptor was not launched.

September 10, 2013 – This test stressed the ability for the Aegis and THAAD missile defense systems to work together. Both systems worked as planned and the test was considered a success.

October 2012 Successful THAAD Intercept Test

October 25, 2012 – This test marked the first time a THAAD missile successfully intercepted a Medium Range Ballistic Missile target.

October 4, 2011 – This test provided a successful salvo/dual intercept. Both targets were intercepted and destroyed.

June 28, 2010 – This test provided a successful endo-atmospheric intercept of a unitary target at lowest altitude to date.

December 11, 2009 – This event was considered a “no-test” when the target malfunctioned after launch. The interceptor was not launched.

March 17, 2009 – A THAAD missile successfully intercepted the target. This acted as a repeat of the mission that ended as a “no-test” in September 2008.

September 17, 2008 – This event was considered a “no-test” when the target malfunctioned after launch. The interceptor was not launched.

June 2008 Successful THAAD Intercept Test

June 25, 2008 – This mission was considered a success when a THAAD missile brought down a target launched from a C-17 Globemaster III.

October 26, 2007 – This mission proved THAAD’s capability to operate in extreme environments. A THAAD missile successfully intercepted an exo-atmospheric target.

April 5, 2007 – This mission successfully tested THAAD’s interoperability with other elements of the Missile Defense System. THAAD intercepted a mid endo-atmosphere unitary target off the coast of Kauai.

January 26, 2007 – A THAAD missile intercepted a unitary target just inside earth’s atmosphere providing another successful test for this program.

September 13, 2006 – This event was considered a “no-test” when the target malfunctioned after launch. The interceptor was not launched.

July 12, 2006 – This mission was considered a success when a THAAD missile intercepted a live target.

 

Ground-Based Midcourse Defense (GMD) Testing Record

Hits Misses No Test Due to: Target Failure Success % Total
Ground-Based Tests
Ground-Based Interceptor 10 8 1 56% 18
Total (All Systems) 10 8 1 56% 18

 

May 2017 GMD Successful Intercept Test

May 30, 2017 – This test involved the new CE-II Block-I version of the kill vehicle, which successfully intercepted a ICBM target.

June 22, 2014 – This test acted as a repeat of January and December 2010 tests, which not only provided a successful intercept, but also met the previously unmet objectives of those tests.

July 5, 2013 – This test failed when the kill vehicle and booster did not separate.

December 15, 2010 – This test failed to provide a successful intercept when the kill vehicle faced guidance errors in the final seconds of flight.

December 2014 GMD Successful Intercept Test

January 31, 2010 – This test failed because both the kill vehicle and the system sensor had performance issues during flight.

December 5, 2008 – This test launched both a mock warhead and an interceptor from different Air Force Bases and all components worked as designed.

September 28, 2007 – Scheduled in response to the no-test in May, this test did yield a successful intercept.

May 25, 2007 – The Missile Defense Agency considers this a ‘no-test’ because the target malfunctioned after launch and the interceptor was never launched.

September 1, 2006 – This test was the first time that operational radar was used to capture targeting information. Primarily used to collect information on the intercept and act as a radar certification, this test was considered a success.

February 14, 2005 – This intercept test was considered a failure when the interceptor did not launch after a silo support arm did not retract, triggering an automatic abort.

December 15, 2004 – This intercept test failed due to a problematic software configuration that failed to launch the interceptor.

December 11, 2002 – This intercept test failed because the kill vehicle and booster did not separate.

October 14, 2002 – Considered a successful intercept, this test was the first test to use Aegis SPY-1 radar.

March 15, 2002 – Not only was this test successful at intercepting a mock warhead, but it was also successful at ignoring two different decoys during the test.

July 2001 GMD Successful Intercept Test

December 3, 2001 – This test was a repeat of the previous test, but used Orbital’s Target Launch Vehicle instead of Lockheed Martin’s Multi-Service Launch System. The test was successful.

July 14, 2001 – This test repeated the previous test and successfully intercepted the target according to satellite, jet, and ground station reports.

July 8, 2000 – This intercept test failed because the kill vehicle and booster did not separate.

January 19, 2000 – This intercept failed because the kill vehicle’s infrared sensor cooling malfunctioned.

October 2, 1999 – Despite an Inertial Measurement Unit malfunction, the kill vehicle was able to use a backup acquisition mode to acquire and intercept its target.

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