MONS talks to Raytheon about their restarting the production of their SM-2 after halting it in 2013
After halting production in 2013, Raytheon is now reconfiguring and modernising the Standard Missile-2 (SM-2) factory to increase production efficiencies as a result of a number of new contracts signed with customers. Todd Callahan, Raytheon Vice President of Naval and Area Mission Defence told MONS: “The big news this year was that four main countries (Japan, Australia, South Korea and the Netherlands) came in for a bulk buy for 262 missiles, that is, $650 million in award.”
When asked what differentiates the SM-2 from other missiles out there, Mr. Callahan replied: “The radars and illuminators used for this missile are extremely good, and the way that we are able to target and close the overall guidance loop of the missile are very mature: we shot over 4,000 SM-2, so it has been extensively tested from all aspects.”
Raytheon cannot disclose the identity of other potential customers, but Mr. Callahan indicated that: “Considering the countries where SM-1 and SM-2 are at the moment, there are not many other markets that are releasable, so we can consider that we have already covered the market and it is now more a matter of moving customers that have SM-1 to SM-2, like Taiwan.”
Additionally, industry sources say that the SM-2 and SM-6 are now being considered by the Royal Australian Navy for the future frigates and the air warfare destroyers programmes.
New SM-2 assembly will begin in early 2018, with the first deliveries slated to occur in 2020.