For another project, I was interested in how many SM-3 Block IIA interceptors and ships capable of launching them the United States would have in the future. This post is the result of attempting to estimate how many Aegis BMD ships the United States would have by about 2040. In the next post, I’ll look at the numbers of interceptors.
How Many Aegis BMD Ships Today?
The U.S. Navy currently has 22 Aegis cruisers and 62 Aegis destroyers. Five of the cruisers (CGs 61, 67, 70, 72 and 73) have a BMD capability. Of the destroyers, all of the Flight I and Flight II ships (28 ships, DDG 51 through DDG 78) have a BMD capability. None of the 34 Flight IIA destroyers (though DDG 112) have yet been given a BMD capability. Thus the United States currently has 33 BMD capable ships. These numbers are reflected in Figure 1 below.
Figure 1. Planned (the chart was made in 2013) deployments of BMD capable ships as of 2015. Chart from: https://www.navalengineers.org/ProceedingsDocs/ASNEDay2014/Day1/AEGIS_CS2.pdf.