That’s right, we can now take down missiles before they ever get near posing a threat to the continental US. So, it makes me wonder if we could deploy these against a fleet of inbound aircraft as well? I mean, does this mean that the US is now invulnerable against any sort of air attack?
Boeing announced this weekend a successful intercept of a ballistic missile in space of its mission representative exo-atmospheric kill vehicle. In the past, there would have been much made of this successful test, but now, itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s only news if a test fails Ã¢â‚¬â€œ the Ã¢â‚¬Å“man bites dogÃ¢â‚¬Â event.
The test of the Ground-Based Midcourse Defense (GMD) system began at 4:01 p.m. Eastern when a long-range ballistic missile target lifted off from the Kodiak Launch Complex in Alaska. Seventeen minutes later, military operators launched an interceptor from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif. As the interceptor flew toward the target, it received target data updates from the upgraded missile-warning radar at Beale Air Force Base, Calif. After flying into space, the interceptor released its exoatmospheric kill vehicle, which proceeded to track, intercept and destroy the target warhead.
GMD defends the nation against a limited number of long-range ballistic missiles, with interceptors deployed in underground silos at Vandenberg and Ft. Greely, Alaska. An integral element of the global ballistic missile defense system, GMD also consists of radars, other sensors, command-and-control facilities, communications terminals and a 20,000-mile fiber optic communications network. The U.S. government has announced plans to extend this capability to Europe.