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Tucked inside the U.S. Army's Redstone Arsenal in Huntsville, Alabama, Raytheon is assembling missiles destined for U.S. and Japanese warships in the Pacific.
Recently, CNBC was granted exclusive access to the operation, as part of a multi-city, multi-month tour of Raytheon's extensive missile defense operations, including access to classified factories.
Raytheon is currently cranking out about 20 of these Standard Missile (SM) variants per month, comprising a key part of the Lockheed Martin-made Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense System. The SM-6s and longer-range SM-3s missiles are intended to help defend against the increasing possibility of North Korean ballistic missile attack.