Boeing awarded $6.56B for upgrades to ballistic missile defense system

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The modified contract also enables Boeing to provide technical support and integrate upgrades to the latest version of the missile defense system in order to keep defensive capabilities "relevant and current".

Last spring, the United States military successfully tested the anti-missile defense system to intercept an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) over the Pacific Ocean.

"The Missile Defence Agency and U.S. Navy sailors manning the Aegis Ashore Missile Defence Test Complex (AAMDTC) conducted a live-fire missile flight test using a Standard-Missile (SM)-3 Block IIA missile launched from the Pacific Missile Range Facility, Kauai, Hawaii, Wednesday morning", DoD spokesman Mark Wright told CNN.

The agency, which manages USA missile defense systems, issued a statement saying the interceptor was launched from the Pacific Missile Range Facility at Kauai, Hawaii. A number of Kim Jong Un's ballistic missile tests have flown directly over portions of the Japanese nation, and as one of America's primary allies in the region, concerns are high that war with North Korea could result in the targeting of American bases on Japanese soil, or even Japanese assets themselves.

Two officials from the Defense Department who sought to have their identities withheld said that the interceptor missile had failed to neutralize the incoming missile which was a dummy. The last failure happened in July of a year ago, and was blamed on a sailor accidentally entering data that identified the target as a friendly, causing the missile to self-destruct.

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The Missile Defense Agency confirmed that a test had taken place, but did not comment on its outcome. However, the missile failed to hit its target.

Since the recent test involved the newest family of Raytheon missiles, the significance of the reported failure is hard to determine at this point, Eric Gomez, policy analyst for defense and foreign policy studies at the Cato Institute, said.

In the past year, the authoritarian country has increased its missile launch tests, with some missiles flying over the territory of Japan.

The Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense component of the U.S. Ballistic Missile Defense System is being developed in cooperation with Japan and is to be deployed on land as well as aboard ships.