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RID – Italian security magazine – shownews

RID – Italian security magazine – shownews

On May 15, the United States and Japan signed a cooperation agreement aimed at developing an interceptor to defend against maneuverable hypersonic weapons as part of the US Glide Phase Interceptor (GPI) program. In 2020, the Missile Defense Agency (MDA) selected Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman and Raytheon to begin development of an anti-hypersonic interceptor for integration into the AEGIS Baseline 9 combat system of US Navy destroyers. Raytheon and Northrop Grumman were also in the running, receiving their respective contracts through June 2022. As part of the collaboration, Japan will undertake the development of the engine and other components of the propulsion system.

According to the cooperation agreement, the first deliveries should begin in 2030. However, as we have learned from the National Defense Authorization Act passed by the US Congress last year – the 2024 fiscal year – Washington aims to have the first operational capability. By the end of 2029 and full operational capability by 2032, it will be considered achieved when fewer than 24 interceptors – a front series – are deployed.

The US and Japan have already cooperated under a similar agreement to develop the SM-3 BLOCK IIA surface-to-air missile.

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