NZ NAVY FRIGATE FIRES MILLION DOLLAR MISSILE Jul 18, 2012 13:33:34 GMT 12
Post by meo4 on Jul 18, 2012 13:33:34 GMT 12
The New Zealand Navy frigate, Te Kaha, has test fired a missile worth almost a million dollars off the coast of Hawaii for the first time.
Currently stationed around 280 kilometres from Honolulu, the frigate is part of the New Zealand contingent participating in the bi-annual Rim of the Pacific Exercise (RIMPAC) international maritime warfare exercise.
RIMPAC is hosted by the United States Navy's Pacific Command, in conjunction with the Marine Corps, the Coast Guard, and Hawaii National Guard forces.
In a rare chance, the HMNZS Te Kaha tested the ship's most powerful weapon - a missile worth around $800,000 - in a special US navy firing range.
"For us obviously this is a pretty big deal, certainly from the ship's perspective.
"The idea is to test the missile firing and systems aboard the ship but more importantly the people involved in firing the missile," said Te Kaha Commander Jon Beadsmore.
In the three hour long test process, a remote control target is released around 60 kilometres away.
Te Kaha uses radar to track the target, then fires a sea sparrow homing missile to intercept it.
The US invites allied military forces from the Pacific Rim nations to participate in RIMPAC.
Most of the 22 RIMPAC nations will participate, with this year's exercise to involve combatants from the US, Canada, Japan, and Australia.
Over the next week all manner of missiles and torpedoes will be test fired.
Te Kaha's turn on the range was called resounding a success.
"The missile was fired, gathered nicely into the control beam of the controlling radar, and proceeded towards the target," Beadsmore said.