Newest Guided Missile Destroyer Successfully Completes Combat Trials

  • (Source: US Navy)
  • 12:00 AM, January 19, 2009
  • 2144
SAN DIEGO --- USS Sterett (DDG 104), the Navy's newest guided-missile destroyer, returned from sea Dec. 16 after successfully completing a Combat Systems Ship Qualification Trial (CSSQT) with the newly implemented Aegis baseline 7.1R combat suite.>> CSSQT is designed to test the operability of combat systems across all warfare areas while providing an opportunity for Sterett's crew to test the functionality of systems in live-fire tactical scenarios.>> Sterett's newly upgraded SQQ-89A(V) 15 sonar system was the first tested with the prosecution of live expendable anti-submarine warfare (ASW) training targets. Further tests incorporated a light-airborne multipurpose system equipped SH-60 helicopter, which dropped sonobuoys and coordinated live torpedo firings.>> Additional demonstrations included six test firings of the ship's torpedoes while executing high-speed evasive maneuvers and testing of the Gun Weapon System (GWS).>> During GWS tests, the 5-inch gun repeatedly hit a live, aircraft-towed drone, in addition to proving extremely effective as a "layered defense" against highly maneuverable surface threats. The MK38 25MM remotely controlled, gyro-stabilized gun systems, which were used in "layered defense" exercises, were also tested with a beach bombardment integrating Marine Corps spotters that proved highly effective.>> "I am extremely satisfied with the gun's performance," said Sterett's Commanding Officer, Cmdr. Brian Eckerle. "It has really performed exceptionally under the taxing demand of firing 582 rounds.">> In addition to direct engagement systems, Sterett's Electronic Warfare (EW) capabilities were tried, as were chaff countermeasures and the SPY-1D(V) air search radar. However, the centerpiece of the CSSQT was the live firing of 7 SM-2 missiles against air and ground launched drone targets.
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