Tuesday, October 30, 2007

I know what you did last Friday...

The U.S military conducted its fourth successful Ground Based Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) test in a row (for a factual summary of the earlier tests see the Missile Defense Agency’s website). As Reuters reports, the test conducted late Friday evening was designed to show how the radar, launcher, fire control equipment and procedures of the system worked together, as well as the interceptor detecting and destroying the target using only the force of the collision.

During this test the target missile was intercepted outside the Earth's atmosphere. The THAAD system is designed to defend troops, population centers and critical facilities against short- to medium-range ballistic missiles. These missiles can be destroyed during late mid-course or final stage flight, flying at high altitudes within and even outside the atmosphere. With this capability, THAAD is able to protect a significant wider area than the Patriot missile defense systems could. The THAAD missile has a range of 200km and can intercept in altitudes of up to 150km - the equivalent Patriot figures are 70 and 24+ km, respectively. For more facts on the THAAD system take a look at this site.

The Pentagon Channel had also a brief clip on the test.

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