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McKeon lauds successful airborne laser test

Posted: February 18, 2010 3:22 p.m.
Updated: February 18, 2010 3:39 p.m.
 
Washington, D.C. - U.S. Representative Howard P. "Buck" McKeon (R-Santa Clarita), the Ranking Member of the House Armed Services Committee, praised the Missile Defense Agency and its industry partners for last week's successful airborne laser test.

On Feb. 11, the Missile Defense Agency used a High Energy Laser (HEL) carried on a Boeing 747-400 aircraft to successfully destroy a missile in its boost phase. The HEL also successfully engaged a second threat missile less than hour later.

McKeon's statement follows:

"Building and deploying a comprehensive, multi-layered missile defense system-capable of protecting the U.S. homeland from missile attack-is a paramount national security requirement. Last week's successful test demonstrated the viability of directed energy technology and brought our country one step closer to developing an airborne laser missile defense system.

"I applaud the scientists, engineers, and military personnel at the Missile Defense Agency and our nation's industry partners for successfully translating a ‘pie-in-the-sky' dream into a real asset capable of destroying a threat. Their ingenuity and drive in the face of doubters should serve as a lesson for all of us.

"While funding for the Airborne Laser system has sharply declined over the past few years, I hope this successful test renews our government's commitment to this innovative technology."

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