Missile Defense Agency Moves Forward On Missile Defense Tests In Kodiak

Press Release

Today the Alaska Congressional Delegation praised the announcement by the Missile Defense Agency (MDA) that it has awarded a sole source contract to the Alaska Aerospace Corporation (AAC) to support two flight tests of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense Systems (THAAD) at the Pacific Spaceport Complex-Alaska on Kodiak, Alaska. The contract, which could total up to $80.4 million, will support MDA’s flight test requirements for the 3rd quarter of fiscal year 2017 and will include the site preparation for two THAAD launchers, range communication and instrumentation capabilities, and a life support area. This new development positions the Kodiak launch facility for a bright future in missile defense testing.

“As I’ve been saying both in D.C. and back home, Alaska is the cornerstone of our nation’s missile defense,” said Senator Sullivan. “Today’s announcement by the Missile Defense Agency further reinforces that statement by adding missile defense testing to our already robust strategic capabilities at Fort Greely and Clear Air Force Station. This year and last year, I was able to include language in the Defense Authorization to specifically highlight the unique importance of the Pacific Spaceport Complex-Alaska found on Kodiak Island. I am pleased that the Missile Defense Agency was listening, and I am confident that they will appreciate all that Kodiak has to offer for THAAD testing, including a community that strongly supports the military.”

“This is the latest chapter in what’s been an exceptional year for military investment in our state,” said Senator Murkowski. “A significant portion of this contract is expected to be invested in new facilities on the Kodiak launch site – a much needed boost for Alaska’s construction industry. This is proof once again that Alaska’s strategic and geographic advantages are highly desirable to national security decision-makers. But what distinguishes Alaska from competing locations is the exceptional support our people demonstrate for national defense and our defenders. Today’s decision is a big win for the military and a big win for Alaska’s economy, and welcome news as we prepare to celebrate our nation’s independence this July 4th.” 

“As a long-time advocate who helped bring missile defense to Alaska, this contract award is good news for Kodiak and Alaska Aerospace and even better news for the continued security of our country,” said Congressman Young.  “Over the last several years, I have fought to bring the Missile Defense Agency back to Kodiak, including a provision I included in this year’s defense bill to help enhance the capability of state-owned spaceports, like the Pacific Spaceport Complex-Alaska.  Overall, I can think of no better place to test THAAD than in Alaska and am happy that Kodiak will once again play an important role testing a part of our nation’s missile defense system.”

Terminal High Altitude Area Defense Systems, or THAAD, is a U.S. Army weapon system intended to defend U.S. service members, allies and partners, cities and populations centers, and critical infrastructure against short and medium-range ballistic missiles. THAAD is a land-based element of the Ballistic Missile Defense System and has been proven to be highly effective against ballistic missile threats. Currently Fort Bliss, Texas hosts two THAAD batteries; Guam hosts another battery intended to protect against the North Korean missile threat to the island and our allies in the Asia-Pacific. Two U.S. allies in the Asia-Pacific – Japan and South Korea – are considering basing THAAD in their countries.