ASSOCIATED PRESS / DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE / JUNE 5, 2008
Two interceptor missiles are launched from the USS Lake Erie based at Pearl Harbor earlier this month as part of a test of a sea-based missile defense system. The missiles successfully knocked down thier target, a Scud-like missile launched from a ship near Kauai, about five minutes after it was fired. A land-based missile defense system is scheduled to be tested again today off Kauai.
Missile defense to be tested today
KAPAA, Kauai » The Army's ground-based missile defense system will be tested off Kauai today, missile defense agency officials said yesterday.
In today's test of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense system, the mobile launcher at Kauai's Pacific Missile Range Facility will attempt to shoot down a missile launched from an airplane, Pamela Rogers, spokeswoman for the Missile Defense Agency, said yesterday.
The target missile will be dropped from the plane, then ignite and gain altitude like a regular ballistic missile, Rogers added.
It will be the first time the THAAD system will try to destroy a separating target, where it has to differentiate between the warhead and the body of the missile, Rogers added.
This is the fourth test of the THAAD system at PMRF.
All three previous tests off Kauai, which used the THAAD launcher and radar currently at PMRF and a target missile fired from a sea-based platform, were successful.
In all, THAAD has performed nine successful tests, including the first several at White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico. In one test, however, the target missile failed to launch and the test was aborted.
THAAD is one of two missile defense systems being tested using the Navy's missile range. The Navy's sea-based Aegis system completed its own successful test on June 5.