Washington D.C. – August 24, 2015 — The persistent, 360 degree overhead view provided by the Joint Land Attack Cruise Missile Defense Elevated Netted Sensor System (JLENS) tethered aerostats is critically needed in regions strategically vital to the United States where airborne threats are proliferating, said Riki Ellison, Chairman of the Missile Defense Advocacy Alliance on Friday. Specific locations include Kadena Air Force Base in Okinawa in the East China Sea and over U.S. air bases in the Persian Gulf region. Last week, the targeting aerostat of the JLENS orbit was added above Aberdeen Proving Grounds in Maryland, providing a complete “Orbit” for the defense of the U.S. National Capitol Region.
A JLENS Orbit consists of two inflated “blimps,” tethered to the ground and float 10,000 feet above sea level. One contains a long-range, 360 degree Very High Frequency (VHF) radar for detection, with the other housing an X-Band radar for targeting airborne threats such a cruise missiles, unmanned aerial vehicles, and aircraft. This information is gathered and sent to anti-missile and anti-air defense systems such Patriot, Aegis, NASAMS, and U.S. fighter aircraft.A JLENS Orbit consists of two inflated “blimps” tethered to the ground, floating at around 10,000 feet above sea level. One contains a long-
“A deployed JLENS Orbit at Kadena AFB on Okinawa would provide both a major upgrade in capability against the considerable airborne threats in the region, and make a significant strategic statement to U.S. allies, adversaries, and to China in its aggressive military expansionism…in the South China Sea.” said Ellison.
U.S. air bases such as Kadena and Al Udeid in Qatar provide the backbone of U.S. military presence and force projection capability overseas. These forward deployed forces provide assurance of U.S. security guarantees to U.S. allies, and deter aggression by would-be adversaries.
“It is a smart and calculated strategic move to be proactive in the development of protective measures against cruise missile and UAV threats.” Ellison concluded.
MDAA’s mission is to make the world safer by advocating for the development and deployment of missile defense systems to defend the United States, its armed forces and its allies against missile threats.
MDAA is the only organization in existence whose primary mission is to educate the American public about missile defense issues and to recruit, organize, and mobilize proponents to advocate for the critical need of missile defense. We are a non-partisan membership-based and membership-funded organization that does not advocate on behalf of any specific system, technology, architecture or entity.