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Missile shot down minutes after launch in test off Kauai

By Star-Advertiser staff

LAST UPDATED: 03:27 p.m. HST, Feb 13, 2013

A Pearl Harbor-based cruiser successfully intercepted a medium-range ballistic missile target that was launched from Kauai’s Pacific Missile Range Facility.

Tuesday night's test shows the Navy can use satellite tracking systems to intercept missile threats sooner and extend the range to the military's missile defense program.

The test marks the ninth time in three years that the USS Lake Erie and its crew successfully performed at-sea operations against cruise and ballistic missile targets using the second-generation Aegis Ballistic Missile system. The Lake Erie recently received faster, more powerful commercial-off-the-shelf signal processing equipment and updates to its weapon system computer programs.

The at-sea intercept occurred just after 11:10 p.m. Tuesday, when a medium-range ballistic missile target launched from the Pacific Missile Range on Kauai. The USS Lake Erie fired the SM-3 interceptor missile five minutes later.

Initial indications are that all components performed as designed, the Pentagon reported.

The Missile Defense Agency and the Navy are jointly developing Aegis BMD as part of the United States' Ballistic Missile Defense System. Currently, 26 U.S. Aegis BMD-equipped warships have the certified capability to engage ballistic missiles and perform long-range surveillance and tracking missions. That number is expected to increase to 32 by 2014.

The Lake Erie received tracking information from space tracking and surveillance satellites and launched the missile before the shipboard SPY-1 radar detected the target. The Aegis BMD Weapon System then guided the missile using tracking information from the satellites until the target was detected and tracked by the SPY-1 radar. The shipboard radar transmitted guidance commands to the SM-3 guided missile that intercepted the target.

The test proves the "launch on remote" concept, which was first demonstrated during an April 2011 test when a U.S. Navy destroyer used data provided by a AN/TPY-2 radar deployed on Wake Island to engage and destroy an intermediate-range ballistic missile target, defense contractor Raytheon said.

Tuesday’s test is the 24th successful intercept in 30 flight test attempts for the Aegis BMD program since flight testing began in 2002. Across all Ballistic Missile Defense System programs, this is the 58th successful hit-to-kill intercept in 73 flight tests since 2001.

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juscasting wrote:
Bring it on NK! We'll show you we can shoot down your Lup Cheong II missiles.
on February 13,2013 | 10:01AM
Maneki_Neko wrote:
Kim Jung Un said that this was a provocative act by the USA and is asking for UN sanctions. "How come you guys get to shoot rockets and we don't?", he was quoted as saying. He then did the horsie dance.
on February 13,2013 | 10:28AM
Leinanij wrote:
Don't we have drones that can get rid of him already?!?
on February 13,2013 | 10:49AM
sailfish1 wrote:
Don't you know that the "horsie dance" originated in SOUTH Korea?
on February 13,2013 | 11:05AM
hanalei395 wrote:
Then the cease fire in Korea is off. And the Korean War continues.
on February 13,2013 | 11:17AM
hanalei395 wrote:
After the Kennedy brothers tried to put the hit on Fidel Castro, the CIA no longer tries to kill foreign Heads of State.
on February 13,2013 | 12:04PM
HD36 wrote:
Ever wonder why the Twin Towers on 9/11 came straight down instead of tipping over? If you watch the footage again, you can clearly see explosions from the inside as it crumpled. It fell exactly like a controlled demolition, like they do to old Las Vegas hotels. They even found technologically advanced thermite at the site. Used to burn through steel beems. Blg 7, a block away, not hit by anything, crumbled the same way. Straight down. The most obviously staged part was the plane that supposedly hit the Pentagon, went through a hole about 20 feet wide, and came out the other end with both wings intact. Both wings had a span of over 50 feet. You gotta be at the top to pull this stuff off. They even scheduled air defense games half way around the world on this particular day.
on February 13,2013 | 03:17PM
pandadaddy wrote:
Okay, I'll bite. So why was this a conspiracy and what was the motive? Please don't say oil.
on February 13,2013 | 05:24PM
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