Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group (IKECSG) completed a multi-ship, live-fire exercise with the Standard Missile (SM-2), March 15.
The dynamic exercise was part of the strike group’s final preparation for the composition training unit exercise that certifies all strike groups prior to deployment.
The exercise, led by the carrier strike group’s Air and Missile Defense Commander and San Jacinto Commanding Officer, Capt. Dennis Velez, also served to demonstrate the Navy’s continued efforts to train for today’s war fighting environment.
“We have always worked to evolve our training, including live firing exercises against high speed targets during and shortly after the Cold War,” said Velez. “And here we are once again adapting and demonstrating our tactical proficiency. With this shoot specifically, we’re seeing our sailors operate their weapons systems successfully against advanced threats in contested battlespace environments.”
The six combatants — USS San Jacinto (CG 56), USS Monterey (CG 61), USS Mason (DDG 87), USS Roosevelt (DDG 81), USS Stout (DDG 55) and USS Nitze (DDG 94) — practiced a number of advanced tactical techniques and procedures including cooperative tracking before firing Standard Missiles (SM-2) at the inbound targets. All six ships scored kills as measured by the missile and target instrumentation, including two direct hits. This demonstrates a successful ramp-up in an era of continued complexity and tactical relevance in the employment of the Aegis weapons system against high-end threats.
SM-2 is an integral part of the layered defense that protects the world’s naval assets and gives war fighters a greater reach in the battlespace. SM-2 variants have successfully intercepted targets, proving their lethality against subsonic, supersonic, low- and high-altitude, high-maneuvering, diving, sea-skimming, anti-ship cruise missiles fighters, bombers and helicopters in an advanced electronic countermeasures environment.
IKECSG is comprised of the aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower, Carrier Air Wing 3, USS San Jacinto (CG 56), USS Monterey (CG 61) and the ships of Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 26–USS Stout (DDG 55), USS Roosevelt (DDG 80), USS Mason (DDG 87) and USS Nitze (DDG 94).