Missile Defense Agency Completes 44th GBI in Alaska

On November 2, the U.S. Missile Defense Agency (MDA) finished installing the 44th Ground-based Interceptor (GBI) at the Missile Defense Complex at Fort Greely, Alaska, completing the deployment of 14 additional GBIs ordered by President Obama in 2013. The final emplacement occurred just ahead of the year-end deadline. The Ground-based Midcourse Defense (GMD) system is designed to defend the U.S. homeland against a limited ICBM attack.

Eight of the 14 new interceptors are of the newest CE-II Block 1 model, which successfully destroyed an ICBM class target during a test in May 2017.

In September, the Pentagon proposed a supplemental $136 million in FY17 to begin preparations to further increase the number of GBIs from 44 to 64. On November 6, the White House submitted a supplemental budget request for FY18 for the additional 20 interceptors and construction of the new missile field, which Congress has included in the conference committee version of the FY2018 National Defense Authorization Act.

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