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'[OT] Anti-missile interceptor fails 3 lines in suc'
2005\02\15@050635 by Russell McMahon

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Rest of article here

       http://www.nytimes.com/2005/02/15/politics/15missile.html

Sounds like someone left their cellphone on :-)



       RM

___________________________

WASHINGTON, Feb. 14 - The nation's fledgling missile defense system
suffered its third straight test failure when an interceptor rocket
failed to launch Sunday night from its base on an island, leaving the
target rocket to splash into the Pacific Ocean, the Pentagon said
Monday.
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The target rocket was launched from Kodiak, Alaska, at 9:22 p.m.
Sunday (1:22 a.m. Monday, Eastern Standard Time), but the interceptor
that was supposed to go up 15 minutes later remained on its pad in the
Marshall Islands, the Missile Defense Agency at the Pentagon said. The
target rocket fell into the ocean near Wake Island.
The agency took some consolation from indications that the launching
failure was caused by a malfunction in ground-support equipment rather
than in the interceptor missile itself, said Richard A. Lehner, a
spokesman for the missile agency. "But it's a disappointment, in that
we had a test planned and were unable to complete it," he said.

...

Mr. Lehner said the interceptor reacted to an erroneous "abort"
command a few seconds before it was scheduled to launch. Scientists
think the order may have been generated by something in the silo, by
electronic monitoring equipment or by some other device, he said.


2005\02\15@092214 by Mike Hord

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This is sick.  Even after over 60 years of reasonably good luck getting
rockets off the ground...

How will they ever fix the obvious (and as yet unaddressed) flaws in
the system if they can't even launch the interceptors?

I have a huge problem with the anti-missile systems being pursued
in the US right now, basically because they represent a massive
waste in resources since they will never work.  Not ever.  Period.

I usually don't say things like that, because people who do tend to
end up with egg on their faces (see power heavier-than-air flight,
space travel, moon landings, and basically any other technological
advance of the last 100 years for details), but the entry-level system
they are working with is so fundamentally flawed in its goals as to
be completely unworkable.

But at least until now they were getting it off the ground...

Mike H.

2005\02\15@111221 by Steve Kosmerchock

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Mike,

I have worked with Raytheon on this project (in the past) and seen some of the stupid mistakes they made. Who in the heck puts BGAs in high stress systems (a "frisbee" sized PCB with close to 10 large BGAs and screwy mounting holes) when you can get leaded (SMT) parts? I also seen some of the test fixtures for just a small portion of one of the test systems, the test PCB was huge, like 4 feet by 5 feet (first spin was over $30K each). It used less then 25% of the available PCB size, total waste of money. Alot of the guys are extremely smart, unfortunately "a few bad apples" you know.......

Best regards,
Steve
Phoenix, Az USA


Mike Hord <spam_OUTmike.hordTakeThisOuTspamgmail.com> wrote:
This is sick. Even after over 60 years of reasonably good luck getting
rockets off the ground...

How will they ever fix the obvious (and as yet unaddressed) flaws in
the system if they can't even launch the interceptors?

I have a huge problem with the anti-missile systems being pursued
in the US right now, basically because they represent a massive
waste in resources since they will never work. Not ever. Period.

I usually don't say things like that, because people who do tend to
end up with egg on their faces (see power heavier-than-air flight,
space travel, moon landings, and basically any other technological
advance of the last 100 years for details), but the entry-level system
they are working with is so fundamentally flawed in its goals as to
be completely unworkable.

But at least until now they were getting it off the ground...

Mike H.

2005\02\15@114143 by Mike Hord

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> Mike,
>
> I have worked with Raytheon on this project (in the past)
> and seen some of the stupid mistakes they made.

<remainder of examples snipped>

So that makes it even worse than I had thought.  I was
speaking about principles of operation- the one-warhead,
one-interceptor model is hopelessly outdated.  Anything
that comes from ex-Soviet technology will likely be a
MIRV containing 3 or more independently targeted
warheads.  Even a single warhead is likely to be
accompanied by debris from the launch vehicle which is
virtually guaranteed to confuse the most advanced of
automatic tracking devices.  I'll give them the benefit of
the doubt that they can actually make an interceptor
which will hit an incoming target; of course, that's not
a given, since they've been having a hard time hitting a
monolithic target, coming on a known trajectory.

The only effective ways to stop incoming ballistic
missiles are boost stage destruction (tough, since the
boost stage occurs either as a surprise from a mobile
launcher or deep within "enemy" territory) and high
altitude nuclear detonation, early enough to catch
MIRVs before they are too far apart.  We aren't
pursuing anything along either of those lines.

Mike H.

2005\02\15@134338 by Edward Gisske

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Maybe a more cost-effective way to stop incoming missiles is to be nicer to
folks in other countries so they don't want to shoot them at you......

Oh, there I go being Pollyanna again.

Ed

{Quote hidden}

2005\02\15@155014 by Bradley Ferguson

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On Tue, 15 Feb 2005 08:22:13 -0600, Mike Hord <.....mike.hordKILLspamspam@spam@gmail.com> wrote:
> I have a huge problem with the anti-missile systems being pursued
> in the US right now, basically because they represent a massive
> waste in resources since they will never work.  Not ever.  Period.

I take the whole thing to simply be a back door corporate subsidy.
We'll spend billions for development of something that, I agree, will
never come to fruition to defend against a highly unlikely scenario.
It would be more worth their time, let alone the money, for them to
work on the DARPA challenge and get an SUV to drive a couple hundred
miles autonomously.  Thats assuming you didn't want to use the money
on education or something foolish like that.

Bradley

2005\02\15@183910 by Russell McMahon

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>Anything
> that comes from ex-Soviet technology will likely be a
> MIRV containing 3 or more independently targeted
> warheads.

Greatest threats short term are novo-nuclear powers with V2 / SCUD /
... path ancestry. Unlikely to help if anyone does a high tech
pasting. For high tech Chinese are the most currently probable,
Russians the most currently capable (apart from the US and an own
goal). For low tech missiles derived or sourced by India, Pakistan,
North Korea, ?Israel?, China indirectly, Iran possibly. Libya v
indirectly only. Chinese technology to elsewhere maybe. (Who did I
miss)(Britain? France? ... ;-) ) The latter are unlikely to use MIRVs
at this stage anyway. Famous last words.

       RM


2005\02\15@204910 by Russell McMahon

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> How will they ever fix the obvious (and as yet unaddressed) flaws in
> the system if they can't even launch the interceptors?

What they want is to arrange technology transfer to the people
launching the missiles.


       RM


2005\02\16@104106 by Mike Hord

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> >Anything
> > that comes from ex-Soviet technology will likely be a
> > MIRV containing 3 or more independently targeted
> > warheads.
>
> Greatest threats short term are novo-nuclear powers with V2 / SCUD /
> ... path ancestry. Unlikely to help if anyone does a high tech
> pasting. For high tech Chinese are the most currently probable,
> Russians the most currently capable (apart from the US and an own
> goal). For low tech missiles derived or sourced by India, Pakistan,
> North Korea, ?Israel?, China indirectly, Iran possibly. Libya v
> indirectly only. Chinese technology to elsewhere maybe. (Who did I
> miss)(Britain? France? ... ;-) ) The latter are unlikely to use MIRVs
> at this stage anyway. Famous last words.
>
>         RM

True, BUT (big one) that still leaves the interceptor on its own to
distinguish, on the fly in mere seconds, which item is the warhead
and which items are debris from the launch vehicle, since most of
that stuff is going to follow a fairly similar path after seperation.

And at the rate they're going, neolithic cultures in South American
rainforests will have developed MIRV capability before their system
is in place.

Mike H.

PS- For an example of (arguably) the only really successful
anti-missile missile system (including the Patriot), see
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_Nike

2005\02\16@110316 by Howard Winter

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Mike,

On Wed, 16 Feb 2005 09:41:03 -0600, Mike Hord wrote:

>...<
> And at the rate they're going, neolithic cultures in South American
> rainforests will have developed MIRV capability before their system
> is in place.

Wasn't there a missile system called "Sprint" (that had some huge acceleration, like 100g) that was for
intercepting missiles on the way down?  What happened to that?

Cheers,



Howard Winter
St.Albans, England


2005\02\16@112738 by Mike Hord

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> Wasn't there a missile system called "Sprint" (that had some
> huge acceleration, like 100g) that was for
> intercepting missiles on the way down?  What happened to that?

Whether it worked or not, I'm not so sure.  It was intended to be
used in tandem with the Nike to catch anything that got through.

Acceleration was 0-Mach 10 in <5 seconds, or 65g.

Both of them used nuclear warheads for their dirty work; the Nike
Zeus did hit-to-kill airborne targets with similar speeds and
trajectories to incoming ballistic missiles (usually other Nikes)
(in the 1960s!  which is what they are unsuccessfully trying to do
now), but when deployed relied up a fairly large extra-atmospheric
nuclear detonation to stop incoming warheads.  The Sprint used
kiloton intra-atmospheric bursts to do the same.

Both ultimately fell victim to party politics and the ABM treaty.

http://www.paineless.id.au/missiles/Sprint.html

Perhaps I was a little harsh in my comment about the effectiveness
of other ABM systems earlier; it should be noted that Sprint was
effectively a descendent of technologies in the Nike Zeus.

Also note that the missile was so fast it needed ablative coating
to deal with the heat generated by drag.  Thrust was substantially
higher than that of most rockets used to launch humans.

Mike H.

2005\02\16@125209 by Edward Gisske

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Or perhaps to a realization of how insane it was to set off a nuclear
explosion above your own city to protect your own city from a nuclear
explosion.

I recall wandering around in a decommissioned Nike-Zeus site just west of
Milwaukee in the mid sixties. It had been converted to sort of a
miscellaneous military site, and happened to be the depot that the MARS
(Military Affiliate Radio System) folks used to store the surplus goodies
that they were giving away to hams in return for staffing a civilian-based
military radio network. Every 6 months or so the MARS participants got to go
to Lapham Peak and haul home stuff (generators, R390's, lots of parts, etc.)
based on how many hours you stood watch on MARS frequencies. It was quite an
installation, with lots of bunkers, silos, and the like. I wonder if it is
still there...Google doesn't tell me much, other than there is a club in MKE
for ex-military folks that worked there.

Ed
>
> Both ultimately fell victim to party politics and the ABM treaty.
>



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