Issue No. 19, October 1997
US Laser Test in Space:
'Secretary of Defense approves laser experiment to improve
satellite protection,' Department of Defense Press Release, No.
526-97, 2 October 1997
Department of Defense Statement
"Secretary of Defense William S. Cohen today has approved an
experiment that will be used to reduce the vulnerability of US
satellite systems. The purpose of the experiment is to collect data
that will help improve computer models used for planning protection
measures for US satellites.
The experiment is being conducted by the US Army's Mid-Infra-Red
Advanced Chemical Laser (MIRACL) located at White Sands Missile
Range, NM. The satellite that will be used for the test, the US Air
Force Miniature Sensor Technology Integration program's third
satellite (MSTI-3), has exceeded its useful lifetime. The
experiment will have two parts: (1) very brief laser illuminations
of less than one second, and (2) an illumination of less than 10
The experiment is fully consistent with US policy and US and
international law. It will not destroy the craft, result in any
orbital debris, nor pose any risk to other satellites.
The experiment is expected to be conducted in the next few days,
weather conditions permitting."
© 1998 The Acronym Institute.
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