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1000th Evolved Sea Sparrow Missile Delivered

Navy NewsStand

Story Number: NNS090827-18
Release Date: 8/27/2009 4:24:00 PM

From Program Executive Office, Integrated Warfare Systems

EAST CAMDEN, Ark. (NNS) -- The 1,000th Evolved Sea Sparrow Missile (ESSM) (RIM 163) was delivered by Raytheon Missile Systems to the navies of the NATO Sea Sparrow consortium Aug. 25 during a ceremony held at Raytheon's Weapon Integration Center in Camden, Ark.

The ESSM program is an international cooperative effort to develop, produce and maintain a common ship defense capability that meets all NATO Sea Sparrow partner nations' needs.

ESSM is a tail-controlled missile that provides critical performance in situations requiring quick reaction capability, and improves ship self-defense against low-altitude, high-velocity and advanced maneuver anti-ship cruise missiles. ESSM also provides effective defense against surface and low-velocity air threats, and is integrated with seven combat systems and four launching systems.

"ESSM's increased speed coupled with its improved guidance system allows for engagements at extended ranges," said Capt. Mike Anderson, ESSM project manager. "The hallmarks of the missile are its international design, combat system flexibility and performance edge."

The NATO Sea Sparrow consortium is NATO's largest. Countries making up the NATO ESSM consortium are Australia, Canada, Denmark, Germany, Greece, Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Turkey and United States.

ESSM is currently deployed in the U.S. Navy and nine international fleets across 20 ship classes. The first ESSM production was delivered to the U.S. Navy by Raytheon in 2002.

NATO Sea Sparrow Program Office management oversight and direction is provided by NATO Sea Sparrow Project Steering Committee which is chaired by Rear Adm. Terry Benedict, Program Executive Office, Integrated Warfare Systems (PEO IWS).

PEO IWS is an affiliated Program Executive Office of the Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA), which manages surface ship and submarine combat technologies and systems, and coordinates Navy Open Architecture across ship platforms. The United States, through the MOUs, has been designated to procure supplies and services on behalf of the member nations. NAVSEA is the contracting activity.

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