The Boeing [NYSE: BA] Ground Based Midcourse Defense (GMD) program team and the Missile Defense Agency dedicated the nation's first ballistic missile defense site at Fort Greely, Alaska, on July 3.
The dedication marked completion of construction of the first GMD missile field. In accordance with President George Bush's direction two years ago to deploy an initial missile defense capability, the Boeing Missile Defense Systems' team is preparing to deliver this first crucial element of the country's national security strategy.
The GMD system consists of integrated ground-based interceptors, kill vehicles, a variety of sensors and an expansive battle management command and control network, which is capable of protecting the homeland from attack.
Since first breaking ground at Fort Greely on June 15, 2002, the Boeing team has worked around the clock constructing the site despite challenging conditions including temperatures averaging 40 below and winds gusting up to 90 mph. Construction involved clearing 550 acres, pouring 5,400 cubic yards of concrete, constructing more than 80,000 square feet of building space and installing six interceptor silos for the initial GMD capability. In addition, 13,000 miles of fiber optic cable are dedicated to the GMD system.
"The progress made on the GMD program at the Fort Greely site over the past two years has been outstanding," said Jim Albaugh, president and CEO of Boeing Integrated Defense Systems. "GMD is one of the first real system-of-systems programs and ranks among the most complex programs the country has ever undertaken. Addressing this national need has taken the best of industry and the best of Boeing."
Boeing, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) and the MDA's GMD Joint Program Office, led the construction effort. In addition, up to 30 different subcontracting firms, employing several hundred people, work at the site. Boeing and its general contractor, Bechtel, are responsible for the interceptor silo field. USACE and its contractor, Fluor Alaska, Inc., are responsible for facilities and support structures.
As prime contractor for the GMD program, Boeing is responsible for the development and integration of the GMD system components, including the Ground-Based Interceptor; Ground-Based Radar Prototype; Battle Management, Command, Control and Communication systems; Early Warning Radars; and interfaces to the Defense Support Program early warning satellite system. Other GMD team members include Orbital Sciences Corp., Raytheon, Northrop-Grumman and Lockheed Martin.
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 $27 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.