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Air Defense: Aegis Comes Ashore
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July 18, 2008: Israel has been so impressed by the U.S. Navy's Aegis anti-missile system, that it wants to buy and install one to help defend Israel from Iranian and Syrian missiles.

So far, the Aegis system has knocked down nearly 90 percent of the missiles fired towards it. This includes shooting down a low flying space satellite. The Aegis system consists of a modified version of the Standard anti-aircraft missile and the Aegis radar system, that shoots down ballistic missiles. This system, the RIM-161A, also known as the Standard Missile 3 (or SM-3), has a range of over 500 kilometers and max altitude of over 160 kilometers. The Standard 3 is based on the failed anti-missile version of the Standard 2, and costs over three million dollars each. The Standard 3 has four stages. The first two stages boost the interceptor out of the atmosphere. The third stage fires twice to boost the interceptor farther beyond the earth's atmosphere. Prior to each motor firing it takes a GPS reading to correct course for approaching the target. The fourth stage is the 20 pound LEAP kill vehicle, which uses infrared sensors to close on the target and ram it. The Aegis system was designed to operate aboard warships (cruisers and destroyers that have been equipped with the special software that enables the AEGIS radar system to detect and track incoming ballistic missiles).

By the end of the year, the U.S. Navy will have 18 ships equipped with the Aegis anti-missile system. Japan also has four Aegis warships being equipped with this anti-missile capability. Other nations are equipping some of their ships with Aegis.

It's unclear how quickly an Aegis anti-missile could be set up in Israel. There's no reason the Aegis system could not be operated from a land installation. Aegis was designed to operate in the harsh conditions (both tropic and arctic) normally encountered at sea, so operating on land is not a problem. Cost is another matter. Getting Aegis ashore quickly, in a year or so, would cost about a billion dollars. The manufacturers (Lockheed Martin for the radar and Raytheon, which also makes the Patriot, for the missiles) would certainly be eager to open up this new market. There are many nations seeking reliable protection from hostile neighbors armed with ballistic missiles.

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sjdoc    ''The cruiser in the cornfield''   7/18/2008 10:53:09 PM
Residents of South Jersey are familiar with a facility described as follows:
"Plainly visible from I-295 and the NJ Turnpike, this landmark often draws double-takes from motorists not from the area. As odd as it may seem, located a stone's throw from million dollar homes in Moorestown, NJ is a working mock-up of a Navy warship. Known as the USS Rancocas, or the "Cruiser in the Cornfield", this is a research & development center used by the Navy & Lockheed Martin for the Aegis weapon system. Armed with a working radar, this facility can also monitor aircraft up and down the Northeast coast. Originally built by RCA this facility has been around about 50 years!"
See here for a photograph.
The Aegis system was designed here, and has been functioning as described above for decades..
So what's "unclear" about "how quickly an Aegis anti-missile [system] could be set up in Israel," anyway?
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dwightlooi       7/22/2008 8:43:48 PM
Oh yes... the AEGIS combat system can be deployed on land to defend greater metropolitan area or a strategic military installation, or both from ballistic missiles, aircrafts and cruise missiles like no other system in the world. The basic sensor package and missile kinematics are superior to every other system -- even the S-400. The SM-2/6ER will cover 371km against aerial threats. The ESSM will provide high firepower protection against saturation attacks from cruise missiles -- even supersonic ones. The SM-3 covers a 600km radius against ballistic missiles at up to orbital altitudes (~250km up) with 21" block II missiles on the way which promises to double that and introduce the ability to dispense multiple kill vehicles per missile. The SM-3 also has the best kill record of any ABM system and the only only to have hit a satellite and separating warhead with decoys to date. The former is important because a satellite is an ~Mach 25 target which demonstrates that the guidance and maneuvering systems already exceeds the capability needed to deal with ICBM velocities (~Mach 18).
The only problem with AEGIS is that the Mk41 VLS and the SPY-1 radars are all pretty big and immobile so in their current form they are pretty much a static defense asset. You can probably pack a 4-cell Mk41 module on a big truck like those Russia uses for the S-300/400 missiles and carry the AEGIS radar systems, electronics and control equipment on a convoy of trucks, but all these will require some additional development.

For the purpose of installing a world beating SAM/ABM system to protect Tel Aviv or Tokyo or whatever city though -- as a permanent installation, it wouldn't be hard to buy AEGIS as is and mount it in a land base instead of a ship.
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