Shootout over the Pacific

The Missile Defense Agency plans to conduct a major ballistic missile defense test this week over the Pacific Ocean. Bloomberg reports that the window for testing the Ground-based Midcourse Defense system begins Tuesday and runs through Friday. The test will entail the launch of a ground-based interceptor missile from Vandenberg AFB, Calif., to collide with and destroy a target missile fired from the Kwajalein Atoll in the western Pacific. Space-based sensors and terrestrial radars will help guide the interceptor missile to the target. If successful, the upcoming test would be the first missile shootdown by the GMD system since December 2008. A GMD test in January failed due to a glitch with a sea-based radar.