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Missile Defence Unready For Middle East Crisis
New Scientists ^ | 7-19-2006 | Paul Marks

Posted on 07/19/2006 2:56:11 PM PDT by blam

Missile defence unready for Middle East crisis

12:23 19 July 2006
NewScientist.com news service
Paul Marks

As rockets and artillery shells continue to devastate Israeli and Lebanese towns, aerospace companies are developing antimissile shields that could one day defend against such attacks.

Hezbollah has used Katyusha rockets to hit targets inside Israel, including the coastal town and naval port of Haifa, killing at least 25. Meanwhile, Israeli artillery bombardments and bombs have hit targets inside Lebanon, destroying infrastructure and leaving more than 270 dead.

Prototype missile defence systems offer the promise of intercepting incoming rockets and artillery shells in flight. One leading experimental system is based on a missile-destroying solid-state laser, while another intercepts an incoming weapon using another missile.

But neither system is ready for use in the current conflict and some military experts are sceptical that either technology would work against a concerted barrage of missiles, especially if launched from unexpected locations.

The laser-based system comes from Northrop Grumman of California, US. The company is close to converting the US Army's experimental tactical high-energy laser (THEL) into a commercial antimissile weapon system, dubbed Skyguard.

(Excerpt) Read more at newscientisttech.com ...


TOPICS: Israel; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: crisis; defense; east; middle; missile; missiledefense; unready

1 posted on 07/19/2006 2:56:14 PM PDT by blam
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To: blam

google MTHEL


2 posted on 07/19/2006 2:58:33 PM PDT by patton (LGOPs = head toward the noise, kill anyone not dressed like you.)
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To: blam
Neither THEL nor MTHEL (Skyguard) are or were solid state lasers. They are both chemical lasers. Solid state lasers will likely replace the chemical laser in the MTHEL system once solid state lasers are more fully developed. Consequently, I don't know how much stock I'd put in this article given that the author doesn't seem to know much at all about the systems he's talking about.
3 posted on 07/19/2006 4:43:25 PM PDT by Reaganesque
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