In a previous post, I projected the number of Aegis BMD ships, and in particular the number of ships with the “advanced” BMD capability, though 2045. I did this primarily because I was interested in the question of how many SM-3 Block IIA interceptors, which have a potentially significant capability to intercept intercontinental-range missiles, are likely to be deployed. In this post, I turn to the question of projecting how many Aegis SM-3 block IIA interceptors the United States might eventually deploy on its ships and at its Aegis Ashore sites.
(1) Projection based on past and planned procurements.
Figure 1 shows the number of SM-3 Block IA, Block IB and Block IIA missiles in inventory based on past procurements and planned future procurements.
Figure 1. Number of SM-3 interceptors in inventory. Diamonds are Block I/IAs, squares are Block IBs, and circles are Block IIAs. Numbers do not include missiles expended in tests or retired because of reaching the end of their service lives.