Unintentional fireworks: Russian missile demo fails on launch

July has not been a good month for naval missile launches. On July 18, during an exercise off the coast of Virginia, the Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer USS The Sullivans launched a Raytheon Standard Missile 2 Block IIIA anti-aircraft missile. The missile, an older model of SM-2 originally delivered to the Navy in 1991, exploded shortly after launch, just barely clear of the ship's superstructure—showering the ship with debris and starting a fire on its flight deck.

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