The US Army has activated its second Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) battery at Fort Bliss, Texas.
A ceremony on Friday marked the activation of A Battery/2nd Air Defense Artillery Regiment, 11th Air Defense Artillery Brigade, 32nd Army Air and Missile Defense Command.
The battery’s equipment consists of THAAD hit-to-kill interceptors, launchers, a fire control and communications unit and radar. The commander of the new unit is Army Captain Brendan McShea.
A Battery, 4th Regiment, is A-2 ADA’s sister unit and was the first THAAD unit in the US Army.
The unit was activated at Fort Bliss in May 2008 with a mission to strategically deploy conducting missile defence in support of geographic combatant commander’s priorities.
THAAD has undergone several years of rigorous testing, designed to push the system into increasingly stressful and operationally realistic scenarios.
Since the current round of testing began, THAAD has intercepted every target it has flown against. THAAD is the only defensive weapon that is specifically designed to destroy incoming ballistic missiles both inside and just outside the earth’s atmosphere.
It provides protection to deployed troops around the world, as well as to other important assets and population centres against short to medium range ballistic missiles in the terminal, or final, phase of flight.
THAAD is an element of the layered, integrated Ballistic Missile Defense System designed to protect the United States, its allies and friends against all types of ballistic missiles in all phases of flight.
The prime contractor for the THAAD missile defence element is Lockheed Martin.