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Sea-Based X-Band Radar Begins Transport Operation Through Straits Of Magellan

File photo of the Sea-Based X-Band Radar.

St. Louis (SPX) Nov 14, 2005
Boeing has teamed with the Missile Defense Agency to begin the transport operation of the Sea-Based X-Band Radar (SBX) from the Gulf of Mexico via the Straits of Magellan.

A component of the Missile Defense Agency's Ground-Based Midcourse Defense program, the SBX will provide tracking, discrimination and hit assessment functions.

Prior to its departure on its journey around the tip of South America, the SBX was located at a Corpus Christi, Texas shipyard. The SBX will be transported into the Pacific Ocean aboard a heavy transport vessel, the Motor Vessel Blue Marlin, which is owned and operated by Dockwise Shipping B.V. of Breda, The Netherlands.

The final destination for the SBX is Adak, Alaska, a small island located in the Aleutian Island chain.

"Using the Blue Marlin clearly made the most sense for our program and for our customer," said Pat Shanahan, Boeing Missile Defense Systems vice president and general manager. "We will save a considerable amount of time and resources. Even though the SBX is self-propelled, the transit time required by Dockwise's Blue Marlin will be less than half what the SBX would require under its own power."

The radar will support interceptor missiles located in Alaska and California and improve their ability to defend against a limited long-range ballistic missile attack on the United States. Home-ported in Adak, the SBX can move throughout the Pacific Ocean in support of advanced missile defense testing and defensive operations.

The SBX program team completed important milestones despite challenges posed by hurricane activity in the Gulf of Mexico over the past several months. Recently, the program marked completion of two rounds of sea trials during which the radar tracked orbiting satellites, thereby demonstrating key functionality for the first time.

In total, the program completed more than 100 test activities, demonstrating its ability to achieve major sustainment and operational capabilities, including: transferring personnel, supplies and fuel, performing at-sea maintenance and demonstrating the ability to operate at sea for extended periods.

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Poland Bids For 'Son Of Star Wars' Missile Defence: Report
Warsaw (AFP) Nov 12, 2005
Poland has held talks with the United States about stationing part of its "son of Star Wars" anti-missile defence system on Polish soil, a report said Saturday.

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