Boeing Kinetic Warhead Technology Key to Successful Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense Flight Test

Sub-systems developed by The Boeing Company [NYSE:BA] played a key role in the latest successful intercept test, Flight Mission-4 (FM-4) of the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense System on Nov 21. FM-4 is the third successful intercept test in one year for the Missile Defense Agency and the U.S. Navy. This test was the most challenging to date and tested the system's ability to engage the target during the ascent phase of flight, then subsequently intercept.

With the success of the FM-3 flight test on June 13, 2002, the Aegis BMD project accelerated its flight-testing objectives. FM-4 marks the beginning of a flight test series to develop an emergency deployment sea-based ballistic missile defense against short- to medium-range ballistic missiles. FM-4 is the first developmental flight test against more complex and stressing ballistic missile engagement scenarios.

Boeing has been teamed with Raytheon Company, the prime contractor for the program, since 1996 to build the Standard Missile-3 (SM-3) kinetic warhead and is responsible for the guidance unit, ejector, kinetic warhead integration, and environmental testing. All Boeing components and systems performed exceptionally during the test.

"This latest intercept again validates the viability of hit-to-kill technology and the ability to field systems that will help protect our homeland, as well as deployed troops, allies and friends abroad," said Debra Rub, vice president, Boeing Air & Missile Defense Systems, part of Boeing Integrated Defense Systems. "Boeing has been developing and proving this technology for more than 15 years and we are proud to be a part of this latest success."

In addition to its work on the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense/SM-3 program, Boeing holds key roles in each element of the Ballistic Missile Defense System architecture. Boeing also leads the System Engineering and Integration effort on the Missile Defense National Team.

A unit of The Boeing Company, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems, is one of the world's largest space and defense businesses. Headquartered in St. Louis, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is a $23 billion business. It provides systems solutions to its global military, government and commercial customers. It is a leading provider of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance; the world's largest military aircraft manufacturer; the world's largest satellite manufacturer and a leading provider of space-based communications; the primary systems integrator for U.S. missile defense; NASA's largest contractor; and a global leader in launch services.

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Cynthia Taylor
Ann Beach