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SM-6 Missile


Raytheon’s SM-6® missile delivers a proven over-the-horizon offensive and defensive capability by leveraging the time-tested Standard Missile airframe and propulsion system. It’s the only missile that supports anti-air warfare, anti-surface warfare and sea-based terminal ballistic missile defense in one solution—and it’s enabling the U.S. and its allies to cost-effectively increase the offensive might of surface forces.

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The SM-6 “Dual -1” missile successfully engaged a ballistic missile target in its terminal phase for the third time in August 2017. It was first tested in a successful flight test mission in August 2015, and then again in late 2016. The “Dual 1” is part of the Missile Defense Agency’s Sea-Based Terminal program and combines both anti-air warfare and sea-based terminal capabilities into the same missile. It succeeded the SM-2 Block IV missile.


Deployed on cruisers and destroyers in the U.S. Navy, the SM-6 missile provides Joint Force and Strike Force Commanders fleet air defense against all types of aircraft – manned and unmanned; land-attack anti-ship cruise missiles in flight; ballistic missiles in their terminal, or final, stage of flight over land or sea; and targets on the ocean’s surface. The missile is subsequently considered a triple threat, providing anti-air warfare, sea-based terminal ballistic missile defense and anti-surface warfare. The SM-6 missile is the most affordable missile per defended area and threat set and continues to perform beyond expectations and its original intended mission. It’s now one missile with three missions.

Vertically launched from a MK 41 VLS canister, the SM-6 missile is compatible with existing AEGIS cruisers and destroyers and future cruisers and destroyers. The system’s operational modes include semi-active homing and active homing to provide highly accurate target engagement, and it incorporates the advanced signal processing and guidance control capabilities of the AMRAAM® air-to-air missile.

The SM-6 missile is also a key component in the U.S. Navy's Naval Integrated Fire Control – Counter Air, providing the surface Navy with an increased battlespace against over-the-horizon, anti-air warfare threats.

The U.S. Department of Defense has approved sales of the SM-6 missile to several international customers, many of them seeking the multi-mission missile to bolster their shipbuilding programs.

In 2016, the SM-6 missile engaged its first-ever surface target, the decommissioned guided missile frigate USS Reuben James. The test demonstrated the missile’s capability in anti-surface warfare and illustrated how it directly supports the U.S. Navy’s distributed lethality concept to increase the offensive might of the surface force.

The latest variant is the SM-6 Block IA missile, which is an emerging change to the Block 1 variant, with improvements to the guidance section. These enhancements allow the missile to seek out and destroy a wide variety of advanced threats with precision. The new variant aced its final land-based test in June 2017, moving it to at-sea testing.

First deployed in 2013, Raytheon has delivered over 500 missiles to date, with many years of production on the horizon as the SM-6 missile continues to evolve to meet warfighter needs. Final assembly of the missile takes place at Raytheon’s state-of-the-art production facility at Redstone Arsenal in Huntsville, Alabama.

Learn more about Raytheon's Missile Defense Solutions.


News & Feature Stories

Triple threat video

Triple play

See how Raytheon’s suite of advanced naval systems helps defend fleets.

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Why we test

Lessons learned when missile defense tech is put through its paces.

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One missile, many missions

One missile, many missions

The SM-6 missile can strike targets in the air and on the sea, including attacking ballistic missiles.

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SM-6 360 view video


See the multi-mission SM-6 missile in action.

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USS Michael Monsoor

U.S. Navy’s stealth destroyers get new weapons

The service’s 2019 budget request includes a request for $89.7 million to transform its Zumwalt-class destroyers by integrating Raytheon’s long-range SM-6 missile.

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U.S. Navy asks Congress for Raytheon SM-6 interceptors

The U.S. Navy is seeking permission from Congress to negotiate a $2 billion, five-year contract to buy Standard Missile-6 interceptors, a deal the service says would avoid $331 million compared to annual purchases.

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