During a NATO missile-defense exercise, a Raytheon built Standard Missile-3 (SM-3) intercepted a medium-range ballistic missile off the coast of Scotland.
"Real-world events demand real-world testing," said Dr. Taylor W. Lawrence, Raytheon Missile Systems president.
Formidable Shield 17 is an integrated air and missile defense exercise to simulate real-world scenarios. The exercise began on September 24 in a joint exercise between Canada, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States, concluding almost a month later on October 17.
“Formidable Shield is the right opportunity for forces to practice together and to allow them to adapt tactics and procedures to strengthen and improve NATO collective ability to defend against increasingly complex ballistic missile and air threats,” said Italian Navy Rear Admiral Francesco Covella, STRIKFORNATO deputy chief of staff.
The exercise also utilized Raytheon developed Standard Missile-2 and Evolved Sparrow Missiles, particularly on the last day, using the weapons against a supersonic target from USAF F-16 Falcons.
Formidable Shield 2017 was a notable first for NATO’s smart defense concept, an idea that encourages Allies to cooperate in developing, acquiring and maintaining military capabilities.
“We are stronger together,” said Vice Admiral Christopher W. Grady, STRIKFORNATO commander, US 6th fleet. “By using the Smart Defense concept and pooling our resources, we can maintain our competitive edge in the maritime environment.
More than 14 ships, 10 aircrafts and 3,300 personnel across the participating countries partook in the NATO exercise, led by the UK Ministry of Defence at the Hebrides Range on the Western Isles of Scotland.