MMSP Upgrade
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Destroyer Set To Fuse Air And Ballistic Missile Defense, Admiral Says

(DEFENSE DAILY 11 JAN 12) ... Mike McCarthy

The Navy is on track to upgrade an Aegis-equipped destroyer this year that will for the first time integrate air-and ballistic missile defense on a surface vessel, the service's program executive officer for integrated warfare systems said yesterday.

Rear Adm. Jim Syring said at the Surface Navy Association symposium that the USS John Paul Jones (DDG-53), the third of the class of Arleigh Burke destroyers, will receive the Multi-Mission Signal Processor (MMSP) in September under the fiscal 2012 budget. Budget plans call for upgrading two or three of Aegis destroyers in subsequent years, he said.

The Navy's entire fleet of Arleigh Burke destroyers and Ticonderoga class cruisers are equipped with the Aegis Combat System for air defense. Only about a combined two dozen carry the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense System. The MMSP is designed to enhance data processing to effectively fuse the two systems for both missions under the Advanced Capability Build 12 (ACB 12). Lockheed Martin builds both systems. The Navy also is looking to design more commonality between the Aegis Combat System on destroyers and cruisers with the Raytheon-built Ship Self-Defense System (SSDS), which is deployed on aircraft carriers and the Marine Corps' fleet of amphibious ships.

"Having components across Aegis and SSDS is exactly where we want to be," Syring said.