Press Release

Boeing Conducts Successful GMD Integrated Flight Test

By SpaceRef Editor
January 27, 2004
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Boeing announced
today the successful launch of a missile defense interceptor boost vehicle
from the Ronald Reagan Missile Site, at Kwajalein Atoll in the Republic of the
Marshall Islands, at 9:23 p.m. EST.

During the test, which is part of the Ground Based Midcourse Defense (GMD)
program and called Integrated Flight Test-13B, a developmental, three-stage
booster vehicle traveled from the launch site to a simulated intercept point
about 800 miles away over the Pacific Ocean.

“The successful completion of IFT-13B moves the Boeing-led GMD team one
step closer to delivering the nation’s first defense against the ballistic
missile threat,” said Boeing Senior Vice President and General Manager of
Missile Defense Systems James Evatt. “It’s making the government’s commitment
to protect the U.S. homeland, forces overseas and friends and allies a
reality.”

The test validated the ability of the GMD system to track, acquire and
destroy enemy ballistic missiles in the midcourse of flight. Test objectives
included the demonstration of system component integration, engagement
operations, sensor tasking and operations and other capabilities to verify
vehicle design and performance.

The test also demonstrated the integration of the GMD Fire
Control/Communications system at the Meck Island Launch Site; simulated Ground
Based Radar Prototype at Kwajalein; Battle Management Command, Control and
Communications functions, and In-Flight Interceptor Communications. The test
did not involve an intercept.

As the prime contractor for the GMD program, Boeing is responsible for the
development and integration of the GMD system components, including the
ground-based interceptor; ground-based radar prototype; Battle Management,
Command, Control and Communication systems; early warning radars; and
interfaces to the Defense Support Program early warning satellite system.

The intercept boost vehicle was designed and built by Orbital Sciences
Corp. Other GMD team members include Raytheon, Northrop-Grumman, and Lockheed
Martin. The mission was monitored by the Boeing GMD team.

A unit of The Boeing Company, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is one of
the world’s largest space and defense businesses. Headquartered in St. Louis,
Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is a $25 billion business. It provides
systems solutions to its global military, government and commercial customers.
It is a leading provider of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance; the
world’s largest military aircraft manufacturer; the world’s largest satellite
manufacturer and a leading provider of space-based communications; the primary
systems integrator for U.S. missile defense; NASA’s largest contractor; and a
global leader in launch services.

SpaceRef staff editor.