MDA Can Accelerate Next-Gen Interceptor: NORTHCOM Nominee
published 29.07.2020 17:36
Lt. Gen. Glen VanHerck, left WASHINGTON: The nominee to take over Northern Command (NORTHCOM), Lt. Gen. Glen VanHerck, says he believes the Missile Defense Agency is taking steps that will speed acquisition of the Next-Generation Interceptor (NGI) to guard against a capability gap, as well as provide an “under layer” as backup.
VanHerck explained that he discussed the issues last week with Vice Adm. Jon Hill, MDA’s director, noting that Hill “is looking forward” to receiving next month industry responses to the April 24 request for proposals for NGI.
VanHerck said that Hill also assured him that the planned service life-extension of the current ground-based interceptors would “bring additional capabilities and also redundancy to the system.”
Further, he said, MDA intends to undertake a series of tests this winter to assess the potential of the Navy’s Standard-Missile 3 (SM-3) carried by the Aegis destroyers, and the Army’s Theater High-Altitude Areas Defense (THAAD) system as possible backups for homeland defense purposes.
The Senate and House versions of the 2021 National Defense Authorization Act contain a plethora of provisions designed to prod DoD action on NGI and a back-up system, as comprehensively laid out by colleague Jen Judson on Monday VanHerck said he’s convinced that 2030 is simply not acceptable for NGI deployment.