Orbital's OBV rocket launched for missile defense interceptor system test

DULLES, Va., 27 Dec. 2008. Orbital Sciences Corp.'s Orbital Boost Vehicle (OBV), the booster rocket for the Ground-Based Interceptor (GBI), was launched as part of a test of the Ground-Based Midcourse Defense (GMD) program. Orbital provides the OBV as part of an industry team led by The Boeing Company for the U.S. Missile Defense Agency (MDA).

DULLES, Va., 27 Dec. 2008.Orbital Sciences Corp.'s Orbital Boost Vehicle (OBV), the booster rocket for the Ground-Based Interceptor (GBI), was launched as part of a test of the Ground-Based Midcourse Defense (GMD) program.

Orbital provides the OBV as part of an industry team led by The Boeing Company for the U.S. Missile Defense Agency (MDA).

The OBV was launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif., as part of the test designated as Flight Test Ground-based Midcourse Defense-05 (FTG-05). Following its launch from a silo, the OBV flew downrange over the Pacific Ocean and supported the intercept of a target vehicle that was launched earlier from Alaska, reports a representative.

Following a preliminary post-flight analysis of the data collected from the mission, MDA and the GMD team confirmed that all primary OBV objectives for FTG-05 were achieved, including pre-launch built-in test functionality, launch and flyout of the OBV, accurate delivery of the Exoatmospheric Kill Vehicle (EKV) payload, and acquisition of telemetry data for further characterization of the OBV's flight characteristics. The OBV and the EKV make up the GBI, which is assembled by Boeing.

"The FTG-05 test marks the seventh successful flight of our OBV booster, supporting MDA's increasingly realistic flight test conditions of the GMD system," says Ron Grabe, Orbital's executive vice president and general manager of its Launch Systems Group.

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