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RIM-66 Standard MR
Standard Missile.jpg
A RIM-66 Standard MR on an Mk-26 launcher
Type Medium range surface-to-air missile
Place of origin  United States
Service history
In service 1967 (RIM-66A SM-1MR Block I)
1979 (RIM-66C SM-2MR)[1]
Used by United States Navy, Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force, Royal Netherlands Navy, German Navy, Canadian Navy, and Others
Production history
Manufacturer Raytheon and others
Produced 1967 Onwards
Weight SM-2 – 1,558 lb (707 kg)
Length 15 ft 6 in (4.72 m)
Diameter 13.5 in (340 mm)

Warhead blast fragmentation warhead
radar and contact fuze

Engine dual thrust, solid fuel rocket
Wingspan 3 ft 6 in (1.07 m)
40 to 90 nmi (74 to 170 km)
Flight ceiling > 24,400 m (80,000 ft)
Speed Mach 3.5
SM-2 Block IIIA Command and Inertial midcourse guidance with monopulse semi-active radar homing in the terminal phase of the interception. Block IIIB missiles have additionally dual infrared/semi-active terminal homing. SM-1 missiles have monopulse semi-active radar homing without command and inertial midcourse guidance. [2]
Surface Ship

The RIM-66 Standard MR (SM-1MR/SM-2MR) is a medium range surface-to-air missile (SAM) originally developed for the United States Navy (USN). The SM-1 was developed as a replacement for the RIM-2 Terrier and RIM-24 Tartar deployed in the 1950s on a variety of USN ships. It is similar to the RIM-67 Standard (SM-1ER/SM-2ER), but has no rocket booster.



The Standard missile program was started in 1963 to produce a family of missiles to replace existing guided missiles used by the Terrier, Talos, and Tartar guided missile launch systems. The intention was to produce a new generation of guided missiles that could be retrofit to existing vessels.[3]

Standard missile 1

The RIM-66A is the medium ranged version of the Standard missile and was initially used as a replacement for the earlier RIM-24C as part of the Mk74 "Tartar" Guided Missile Fire Control System. It used the same fuselage as the earlier Tartar missile, for easier use with existing launchers and magazines for that system. The RIM-66A/B is a semi-active radar homing missile like the earlier RIM-24C, but with many improvements that make it more capable than its predecessor. The RIM-66A/B Standard MR, (SM-1MR Block I to V) was used during the Vietnam War. The only remaining version in service is the RIM-66E (SM-1MR Block VI). In service with Tartar Guided Missile Fire Control System equipped vessels and Mk 92 Guided Missile Fire Control System equipped vessels.

Standard missile 2

The RIM-66C/D Standard MR (SM-2MR Block I), was developed in the 1970s and was a key part of the Aegis combat system and New Threat Upgrade (NTU). The SM-2MR introduced inertial and command mid-course guidance. The missile's autopilot is programmed to fly the most efficient path to the target and can receive course corrections from the ground. Target illumination for semi-active homing is needed only for a few seconds in the terminal phase of the interception. This capability enables the Aegis combat system and the New Threat Upgrade equipped vessels to time share illumination radars, greatly increasing the number of targets that can be engaged at one time. In the middle 1980s, the SM-2MR was deployed via Mk 41 Vertical Launch System (VLS) aboard the USS Bunker Hill, the first U.S. Navy ship to deploy a vertical launcher. VLS is now the predominant launcher used with the Standard missile in the U.S. Navy aboard Ticonderoga-class cruisers and Arleigh Burke-class destroyers.

The SM-1 and SM-2 were continuously upgraded through Blocks (see below).

The Standard can also be used against ships, either at line-of-sight range using its semi-active homing mode, or over the horizon using inertial guidance and terminal infrared homing.[4]


Standard missiles were constructed by General Dynamics Pomona Division until 1992, when it became part of the Hughes Missile Systems Company. Hughes formed a joint venture with Raytheon called Standard Missile Company (SMCo). Hughes Missile Systems was eventually sold to Raytheon making it the sole contractor.[5]

Operational history

The Standard missile one became operational in 1968. The missile was utilized by ships equipped with the Tartar Guided Missile Fire Control System. The missile saw its first combat use in the early 1970s in the Vietnam war. The Standard missile two became operational in the late 1970s and was deployed operationally with the Aegis Combat System in 1983. Both Standard one and two were used against both surface and air targets during Operation Praying Mantis. On July 3, 1988, USS Vincennes (CG-49) shot down Iran Air Flight 655, an Airbus A300B2, using two SM-2MR missiles from her forward launcher.[6]

Deployment history

The Standard missile is designated by blocks depending upon their technological package.

SM-1 Medium Range Block I/II/III/IV, RIM-66A

The First Standard missiles entered service in the USN in 1967. Blocks I, II, and III were preliminary versions. Block IV was the production version. This missile was a replacement for the earlier RIM-24C Tartar missile.

SM-1 Medium Range Block V, RIM-66B

The RIM-66B introduced changes that resulted in higher reliability. A new faster reacting autopilot, a more powerful dual thrust rocket motor, and a new warhead were added.

SM-1 Medium Range Blocks VI/VIA/VIB, RIM-66E

The RIM-66E was the last version of the standard missile one medium range. This version entered service in 1983 [7 ]with the United States Navy and export customers. The RIM-66E was used by all remaining Tartar vessels that were not modified to use the New Threat Upgrade and Oliver Hazard Perry class frigates which controlled it with the Mk92 fire control system. The missile was retired from USN service in 2003; however it is still widely used abroad and is expected to remain viable until 2020.[8]

SM-2 Medium Range Block I, RIM-66C/D

The RIM-66C was the first version of the Standard missile two. The missile became operational in 1978 with the Aegis combat system fitted to the Ticonderoga class cruiser. The RIM-66D was the SM-2 medium range block I version for the New Threat Upgrade. The SM-2 incorporates a new autopilot giving it inertial guidance in all phases of flight except for the terminal intercept where semi-active radar homing is still used. This version is no longer in service, remaining missiles have either been remanufactured into later models or have been put in storage.

SM-2 Medium Range Block II, RIM-66G/H/J

The Block II missile introduced in 1983 with a new rocket motor for longer range and a new warhead. The RIM-66G is for the Aegis combat system and the Mk26 missile launcher. The RIM-66H is for Aegis and the Mk41 vertical launcher. The RIM-66J is the version for the New Threat Upgrade.

SM-2 Medium Range Block III/IIIA/IIIB, RIM-66K/L/M

The RIM-66M is the version of the Standard missile two medium range (SM-2MR) currently in service with the USN aboard Ticonderoga class cruisers, and Arleigh Burke class destroyers. The missile is specifically designed for the Aegis Combat System and the Mk41 Vertical launch system. The Block III missiles differ from earlier blocks by the addition of the MK 45 MOD 9 target detecting device, for improved performance against low altitude targets. The Block IIIB missile additionally has a dual semi-active/infrared seeker for terminal homing. The dual seeker is intended for use in high-ECM environments, against targets over the horizon or with a small radar cross section.[9] The seeker was originally developed for the canceled AIM-7R Sparrow air-to-air missile. All USN Block III and IIIA missiles are to be upgraded to Block IIIB. Block IIIA missiles are operated by the Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force on its Kongo class and Atago class Aegis destroyers. Aegis equipped vessels in the Spanish and South Korean navies use it as well. The Dutch and German Navies have added it to the Anti-Air Warfare system, which uses the Thales Nederland Active Phased Array Radar and Smart-L radar. South Korean KDX-II destroyers use the block IIIA with a New Threat Upgrade compatible guided missile fire control system. Block III variants for Aegis and arm launchers are designated RIM-66L. Block III missiles for New Threat Upgrade systems is designated RIM-66K. Block IIIB missiles were not produced for the New Threat Upgrade. Blocks IIIA and IIIB are the current production versions.


A RIM-66 being assembled.

In the US Navy, RIM-66 Standard was deployed on ships of the following classes, replacing RIM-24 Tartar in some cases:

RIM-66 has also been in service in other navies worldwide, mostly in ships of classes similar to those listed above.

Surface to air variants

Designation Block Platform Notes
RIM-66A SM-1MR Block I to IV Digital Tartar In Service 1967, Conscan radar seeker
RIM-66B SM-1MR Block V Digital Tartar Plane scanning seeker
RIM-66C SM-2MR Block I Aegis combat system, Mk26 launcher MK 115 blast-fragmentation warhead
Monopulse seeker for ECM resistance
RIM-66D SM-2MR Block I New Threat Upgrade First New Threat Upgrade version
RIM-66E SM-1MR Blocks VI, VIA, VIB Digital Tartar and Mk 92 Fire Control System. In service 1983. Version still in service with export customers. Adds monopulse seeker developed for Standard missile 2.
RIM-66G SM-2MR Block II Aegis combat system, Mk26 launcher In Service 1983.
RIM-66H SM-2MR Block II Aegis combat system, Mk41 Launcher Added Thiokol MK 104 rocket motor, increasing range
High-velocity fragmentation warhead
RIM-66J SM-2MR Block II New Threat Upgrade
RIM-66K-1 SM-2MR Block III New Threat Upgrade
RIM-66K-2 SM-2MR Block IIIA New Threat Upgrade In Production.
RIM-66L-1 SM-2MR Block III Aegis combat system, Mk26 launcher
RIM-66L-2 SM-2MR Block IIIA Aegis combat system, Mk26 launcher
RIM-66M-1 SM-2MR Block III Aegis combat system, Mk41 Launcher Improved MK 45 MOD 9 target detecting device, for low altitude targets
RIM-66M-2 SM-2MR Block IIIA Aegis combat system, Mk41 Launcher MK 125 warhead. In production.
RIM-66M-5 SM-2MR Block IIIB Aegis combat system, Mk41 Launcher Missile Homing Improvement Program (MHIP), dual IR / SARH seeker, IR seeker mounted on side fairing. In Production.

Table sources, reference material: [10][7 ][11][12]

See also


  1. ^ United States Navy,US Navy Fact File:Standard Missile, October 11, 2002. Accessed June 5, 2006.
  2. ^ Raytheon,, March 17, 2009, Accessed August 24, 2009.
  3. ^
  4. ^ Canadian Forces Maritime Command. Standard missile. Accessed June 5, 2006.
  5. ^ - Standard specs Designation systems RIM-66.
  6. ^ United States Navy. "Formal Investigation into the Circumstances Surrounding the Downing of Iran Air Flight 655 on 3 July 1988" (PDF). Retrieved 2007-01-28.  
  7. ^ a b Raytheon RIM-66 Standard MR
  8. ^ USNI Combat Fleets 2005-2006, Wertheim, Eric; Editor, USN section Naval Institute Press © 2005
  9. ^ USNI Combat Fleets 2005-2006, Wertheim, Eric; Editor, USN section Naval Institute Press ©2005
  10. ^ The US Navy - Fact File
  11. ^ SM-2 RIM-66 / RIM-67 Standard Missile
  12. ^ USNI Guide to Combat Fleets: Their Ships and Weapons. 2005-2006 ©2005 USNI Press

External links

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