Strategic Weapons: Target, Target, Burning Bright

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March 25, 2011: The U.S. has developed a new IRBM (Intermediate Range Ballistic Missile) target missile for testing anti-missile systems. IRBMs have a range of 3,000-5,500 kilometers and come in faster than shorter range ballistic missiles. To adequately test an anti-missile system, your target has to reenter the atmosphere at the same speed as a real IRBM. The U.S. regularly conducts tests for its Aegis and THAAD anti-missile systems, as well as the Israeli Arrow system.

The contract with Orbital Sciences Corp. provides for the delivery of $217-1,100 million worth of decoys over the next seven years. The new IRBM-T decoy can be launched from land, a ship or dropped out the back of a C-17 transport.

 


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