NATO SEASPARROW SURFACE MISSILE SYSTEM PROJECT

The NATO SEASPARROW Surface Missile System Project is a joint international military and industrial consortium with the distinction of being the largest and longest running cooperative smart defense initiative in NATO history.

The NATO SEASPARROW Surface Missile System Project is a joint international military and industrial consortium with the distinction of being the largest and longest running cooperative smart defense initiative in NATO history.

CONSORTIUM NATIONS

Australia
Belgium
Canada
Denmark
Germany
Greece
Netherlands
Norway
Portugal
Spain
Turkey
United States

// ABOUT NATO SEASPARROW

Since its inception in 1968, the NATO SEASPARROW Project has had one pursuit – perfecting anti-ship missile defense capabilities through continued technology improvement. For fifty years, the NATO SEASPARROW Project has delivered on its mission to provide navies with an effective self-defense capability against some of their most serious threats.

// ABOUT NATO SEASPARROW

Since its inception in 1968, the NATO SEASPARROW Project has had one pursuit – perfecting anti-ship missile defense capabilities through continued technology improvement. For fifty years, the NATO SEASPARROW Project has delivered on its mission to provide navies with an effective self-defense capability against some of their most serious threats.

// THE VISION

The NATO SEASPARROW Consortium will be the pre-eminent organization to support Participating Governments in maintaining and evolving their naval self-defense missile and systems capabilities.

// THE VISION

The NATO SEASPARROW Consortium will be the pre-eminent organization to support Participating Governments in maintaining and evolving their naval self-defense missile and systems capabilities.

// THE MISSION

The mission of the NATO SEASPARROW Project is to provide an optimal project management organization and a forum for International cooperation to effectively support the needs of Participating Governments and client Nations in acquiring, sustaining, and maintaining defense of their forces using SEASPARROW Missile variants, associated systems, and evolutions of the missile and system capabilities against today’s and tomorrow’s threats.

// THE MISSION

The mission of the NATO SEASPARROW Project is to provide an optimal project management organization and a forum for International cooperation to effectively support the needs of Participating Governments and client Nations in acquiring, sustaining, and maintaining defense of their forces using SEASPARROW Missile variants, associated systems, and evolutions of the missile and system capabilities against today’s and tomorrow’s threats.

NATO SEASPARROW CONSORTIUM HISTORY

For 50 years, the NATO SEASPARROW Project has delivered on its mission to provide navies with an effective self-defense capability against some of their most serious threats. From ambitious beginnings, the project has grown to meet new and evolving threats, and to exemplify the concept of a Smart Defense initiative. The NATO SEASPARROW Project’s long history chronicles developments in technology, and partnerships between industry, government, and military that have made this the longest running cooperative weapons project.

In 1966, the United States approached NATO’s Conference of Naval Armaments Directors (CNAD) with a proposal for a shipboard self-defense system to counter the growing Anti-Ship Missile (ASM) threat. Later that same year, the NATO Naval Armaments Group (NNAG) established Project Group 2 (PG2) to evaluate the possibility of a cooperative program to develop an ASM defense system. PG2 consisted of Italy, France, Norway, and the U.S. Observers to PG2 included Germany, Denmark, and the Netherlands.

The study was ongoing when tragically, in October of 1967, the Israeli destroyer Eilat was sunk by an anti-ship missile. This proved to be the catalyst for NNAG approval of the PG2 recommendations to embark on the cooperative development of an ASM defense system built to improve the existing U.S.-developed AIM-7 Sparrow missile by modifying it to have folding wings and clipped fins.

Among the 15 NATO members at the time, leaders from four nations (Denmark, Italy, Norway and the U.S.) approached CNAD with a proposal to form a NATO project. Approval was granted, allowing the four nations to proceed. On 10 June 1968, the four founding members completed signature of the memorandum of understanding entitled, International Development of the NATO SEASPARROW Surface Missile System, which established a project that likely succeeded beyond what they imagined.

From ambitious beginnings, the NATO SEASPARROW Project has grown to meet new and evolving threats and to exemplify the concept of a smart defense initiative.

NATO SEASPARROW CONSORTIUM HISTORY

For 50 years, the NATO SEASPARROW Project has delivered on its mission to provide navies with an effective self-defense capability against some of their most serious threats. From ambitious beginnings, the project has grown to meet new and evolving threats, and to exemplify the concept of a Smart Defense initiative. The NATO SEASPARROW Project’s long history chronicles developments in technology, and partnerships between industry, government, and military that have made this the longest running cooperative weapons project.

In 1966, the United States approached NATO’s Conference of Naval Armaments Directors (CNAD) with a proposal for a shipboard self-defense system to counter the growing Anti-Ship Missile (ASM) threat. Later that same year, the NATO Naval Armaments Group (NNAG) established Project Group 2 (PG2) to evaluate the possibility of a cooperative program to develop an ASM defense system. PG2 consisted of Italy, France, Norway, and the U.S. Observers to PG2 included Germany, Denmark, and the Netherlands.

The study was ongoing when tragically, in October of 1967, the Israeli destroyer Eilat was sunk by an anti-ship missile. This proved to be the catalyst for NNAG approval of the PG2 recommendations to embark on the cooperative development of an ASM defense system built to improve the existing U.S.-developed AIM-7 Sparrow missile by modifying it to have folding wings and clipped fins.

Among the 15 NATO members at the time, leaders from four nations (Denmark, Italy, Norway and the U.S.) approached CNAD with a proposal to form a NATO project. Approval was granted, allowing the four nations to proceed. On 10 June 1968, the four founding members completed signature of the memorandum of understanding entitled, International Development of the NATO SEASPARROW Surface Missile System, which established a project that likely succeeded beyond what they imagined.

From ambitious beginnings, the NATO SEASPARROW Project has grown to meet new and evolving threats and to exemplify the concept of a smart defense initiative.

October 1969 – Signing the $23 million NATO SEASPARROW contract is Rear Admiral Mark W. Woods, Commander, Naval Ordnance Systems Command. Seated are (l to r): A. Abate, Raytheon; RDML Woods; CDR F. Tønnessen, RNN; Dr. J. F. Shea, Raytheon. Standing are (L to R): CAPT S. T. Counts, USN, NATO SEASPARROW Project Manager; LCDR P. I. Bledsoe, USN; LCDR F. Andersen, RDN; LT A. Pescatori, IN.

10 July 1968 – 1st NATO SEASPARROW Project Steering Committee (NSPSC) Meeting – Washington, DC.

WHO WE ARE

WHO WE ARE

Technicians at Missile Maintenance Facility (MMF) Bedford, Canada stand with the first ESSM Block 1 retrofitted at the facility.
Technicians prepare to load a Mk25 Quad Pack aboard the USS Shoup (DDG-86) in support of the first ESSM Block 1 firing.
Fire Controlmen aboard the USS Carl Vinson (CVN-70) load a RIM-162 ESSM into the Mk132 Guided Missile Launcher.

PROJECT NEWS

PROJECT NEWS

NATO SEASPARROW Project Conducts Successful Flight Test of ESSM BLOCK 2

POINT MUGU, Calif. – The NATO SEASPARROW Project Office recently conducted a successful flight test of the Evolved SEASPARROW Missile (ESSM) Block 2, intercepting a BQM-74E aerial target, the U.S. Navy announced, July 5.

The test is the first ESSM flight test to utilize the new Block 2 active guidance seeker-head. ESSM Block 2 will employ both semi-active and active guidance to meet current and anticipated future threats.

This test follows the successful completion of two Controlled Test Vehicle flight tests in June 2017 and is the first in a series of live fire tests that will lead to the ESSM Block 2 missile entering production.

“This flight test is critical to demonstrating the technology for the ESSM Block 2,” said Capt. Bruce Schuette, project manager for the NATO SEASPARROW Project. “I am very proud of the entire NATO SEASPARROW Project Team, from our industry partners to our field activities and test facilities, for all the extensive work that went into making this event a success.”

LEADERSHIP

Captain Thomas A. Seigenthaler, USN

Project Manager

Captain Seigenthaler, a native of the Philadelphia, PA area, is a 1999 graduate of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute via an NROTC scholarship, where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Applied Physics. He reported to USS ELROD (FFG 55), serving as First Lieutenant and Combat Information Center Officer during a three-year Division Officer tour.

In 2002, he reported to the Navy Surface Warfare Officer School in Newport, Rhode Island as a Division Officer Course instructor. During his tour serving as the Operations lead instructor, he earned a Master of Science in Management, again from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, ultimately reporting to Surface Warfare Department Head School.

In November 2004, he reported as the Chief Engineer in Pre-Commissioning Unit FARRAGUT (DDG 99), where he oversaw final ship construction at Bath Iron Works in Maine and ultimately Mayport, Florida after FARRAGUT’s commissioning. In 2007, he served as Chief Engineer in USS HUÉ CITY (CG 66), concluding with execution of a lateral transfer selection to the Engineering Duty Officer community.

In 2017 he transferred to PEO IWS 3.0 in Washington D.C. as the Deputy Principal Assistant Program Manager for the STANDARD Missile program, responsible for design, development, production, and sustainment of all SM-2 and SM-6 missile variants. In 2019, he reported as the Deputy Branch Head for Joint and Urgent Requirements for the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations, Warfare Integration Directorate (OPNAV N9I). At OPNAV he was responsible for all Navy Accelerated Acquisition and Urgent Operational Needs and management of Joint Acquisition process for all Navy acquisition programs.

In December 2020, Captain Seigenthaler became the Major Program Manager, Program Executive Office, Integrated Warfare Systems (PEO IWS) 12.0/NATO SEASPARROW Project Office.

Captain Nuno Miguel Bulcão Sarmento, Portuguese Navy

Deputy Project Manager - International

Captain Nuno Sarmento was born in Luanda, Angola. He joined the Portuguese Navy in 1986 and finished the Weapons and Electronic Engineering Course at the Portuguese Naval Academy in 1991.

He was the Head of Electric and Electronic Engineering Section of the light frigate “Jacinto Cândido” (1991-1992), the Weapons Engineering Officer of Portuguese frigate “N.R.P Vasco da Gama” (1992-1996), and the Head of Weapons and Engineering Department of Portuguese frigate “N.R.P Corte Real” (2002-2005).

He accomplished several assignments at Portuguese Navy Directorate of Ships, namely Head of Missile Systems Section (1996-2002), the Head of the Weapons Systems Division (2006-2010), and Head of the Weapons and Electronic Department (2014-2018).

He has taken several International Cooperation assignments; being the Portuguese Single Point of Contact for the NATO SEASPARROW Consortium and for the Harpoon Joint Executive Committee (1996-2002), Portuguese Steering Committee Member (2008-2010 and 2014-2018) for the NATO SEASPARROW Consortium, and he was the Portuguese National Deputy in the NATO SEASPARROW Project Office in Washington DC (2011-2014).

He was the National Representative in several Research & Development groups within NATO and European Defence Agency (2006-2010) and the lead Portuguese negotiator of several cooperative Memorandum Of Understanding for weapons development, production and life cycle support (2011-2018).

He was the Head of Command and Control Section of Portuguese Navy Information and Communication Technology Directorate (2005-2009) and he was responsible for the Strategic and Project Management Office of the Information Technology Superintendence and the project manager of the Strategic Planning and Balanced Score Card Implementation in the Navy (2009-2011).

Between March 2018 and August 2020, he was the Head of Plans and Policy Division of the Portuguese Naval Staff.

In August 2020, Captain Sarmento returned to the NATO SEASPARROW Project Office as the Deputy Project Manager International.

Captain Sarmento has an MBA from Universidade Católica and has concluded the Naval War College course, Instituto Superior Naval de Guerra. He has several technical trainings in weapons and missile systems.

Mark A. Urciuolo

Deputy Project Manager - Civilian

Mark Urciuolo, originally from Titusville, FL, by way of Harrisburg, PA, began his career in May 2001 after receiving his Master’s Degree in Public Policy from the George Washington University in Washington, DC.

His first job was as a support contractor for PMS 422, then the Standard Missile Program Office. After two-and-a-half years, he moved to NSPO in support of the Project Operations division, working on procurement requests, technical instructions, proposal evaluations, and numerous other contracting and acquisition tasks in support of the office.

In May of 2005, Mark departed NSPO for the Transportation Security Administration. He remained in a support contractor role for TSA’s Office of Acquisition, where he was responsible for preparing contract solicitations, conducting negotiations, and administering awarded contracts. In July of 2006 he entered Federal Service, remaining at TSA as an in-sourced employee. Upon receipt of his warrant, Mark was named head of OA’s Infrastructure Procurement support team and was responsible for guiding the work of nearly a dozen other contracting officers, contract specialists, and interns. In this role Mark provided support for 23 distinct program offices within TSA and was named the TSA Office of Acquisition Employee of the Year for 2007.

In July of 2008, Mark returned to NSPO as the Director of its Acquisition and Third Party Sales division. From July 2008 to December 2016, he was responsible for all aspects of acquisition and contract planning in support of the programmatic objectives of this twelve nation cooperative project, as well as all foreign military sales customers. During his tenure, and with the support of a dedicated and highly talented team, NSPO planned and negotiated a pair of multi-year production contracts for ESSM, increased its number of foreign military sales customers, conducted its first contract competition since 1995, and awarded the ESSM Block 2 Engineering and Manufacturing Development contract, the single largest contract in the near 50 year history of the NATO Seasparrow Consortium. In his capacity as Director of Acquisition and Third Party Sales he earned the PEO IWS Excellence Award and NATO SeaSparrow Project Steering Committee Excellence Award. Mark assumed the role of Deputy Program Manager for NSPO in January 2017 and briefly held the position of acting Program Manager in the latter half of 2017 before returning exclusively to the DPM position in December of that year. He received the Navy Meritorious Civilian Service Award in May, 2018 in recognition of his work as the acting Program Manager.

A graduate of the Defense Acquisition University (DAU) Program Manager’s Course, Mark is an Acquisition Corps member certified Level III in Program Management. He holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science from Marist College in Poughkeepsie, NY, and a Master of Arts in Public Policy from the George Washington University in Washington, DC.