2003 CPEO Military List Archive

From: CPEO Moderator <cpeo@cpeo.org>
Date: 15 Aug 2003 20:05:31 -0000
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: [CPEO-MEF] Missile Defense Radar Site Chosen
No. 605-03
Aug 15, 2003

Missile Defense Radar Site Chosen

The Missile Defense Agency (MDA) announced today that it has selected
Adak, Alaska, as the Primary Support Base (PSB) for the Sea-Based X-Band
(SBX) radar.  The PSB includes a mooring site and minimum logistics
support for the SBX.  The SBX is a part of the Ground-based Midcourse
Defense (GMD) system, a missile defense system designed to intercept and
destroy long-range ballistic missiles aimed at the U.S. homeland.

The selection of Adak is contained in the Record of Decision signed by
MDA director Lt. Gen. Ronald T. Kadish, as part of the recently
completed GMD extended test range final environmental impact statement
(FEIS).  The FEIS analyzed the impacts of the proposed action and
alternatives to establish an extended test range capability to provide
more realistic flight-testing of the GMD system.  The FEIS examined
development of the capability for single and dual launches of
interceptor and target missiles and supporting infrastructure at various
locations in the Pacific.

Besides Adak, five other locations were considered:  Naval Base Ventura
County, Calif.; Naval Station Everett, Wash.; Reagan Test Site,
Kwajalein Atoll, Republic of the Marshall Islands; Port of Valdez,
Alaska and Naval Station Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.  The selection of Adak
was the result of extensive analysis of numerous factors relating to
operations, support and sustainability, including easy access to
potential operating areas and available support infrastructure.

The SBX vessel, a self-propelled semi-submersible modified oil-drilling
platform, will be modified and payloads installed at shipyards in
Brownsville and Corpus Christi, Texas, and is scheduled to begin
supporting GMD operations in 2005.  The SBX will provide detailed
ballistic missile tracking information to the GMD system, as well as
advanced target and countermeasures discrimination capability for the
GMD interceptor missiles.  The ability of the SBX to deploy to operating
locations under its own power allows it to support actual GMD operations
as well as realistic testing.  The SBX is approximately 390 feet long
and 250 feet high, and has a displacement of 50,000 tons.

News media point of contact is Rick Lehner, Missile Defense Agency, at
(703) 697-8997.

[Web Version: http://www.dod.mil/releases/2003/nr20030815-0373.html]

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