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Cover of the Missile Defense Agency's Budget Estimates for Fiscal Year 2018

Dear members and friends,


The Missile Defense Agency (MDA) released its annual budget request yesterday on May 24, 2017, requesting a total of $7.9 billion in Fiscal Year (FY) 2018; $379 million more than MDA’s budget request for FY17. MDA’s budget request is proposed each year by the President for consideration by Congress. Following release of the annual budget request, Congress often provides language guiding the allocation of funding to MDA.

Click here to review MDA’s FY18 Budget Estimates Overview.


In comparison to last year’s MDA budget request, funding for the Ground-based Midcourse Defense (GMD) program within MDA’s FY18 budget request was reduced; going from $1.0 billion requested in FY17 to $828.1 million in FY18. Currently, 32 Ground-Based Interceptors (GBIs) are deployed at Fort Greely, Alaska and four at Vandenberg Air Force Base, California, with plans to deploy an additional eight GBIs by the end of 2017. $465.5 million will go toward development of the Redesigned Kill Vehicle (RKV), which is being designed to enhance kill vehicle reliability, improve in-flight communications, and better utilize sensor data.

  • $828.1 million for the Ground-based Midcourse Defense (GMD)
  • $465.5 million for Improved Homeland Defense Interceptors
  • $76.8 million for Ground-based Midcourse Defense Test
  • $137.9 million for the Operation and Maintenance (O&M) of the GMD weapon system
  • $130.7 million for the Sea-Based X-band (SBX) radar
  • $357.7 million for the Long Range Discrimination Radar
  • $21 million for Homeland Defense Radar – Hawaii (HDR-H) to conduct source selection activities



Requested funds for Aegis ballistic missile defense (BMD) were tallied at $852.1 million in the FY18 request. An element of MDA’s FY18 budget request for Aegis BMD includes integration of the new Standard Missile-3 (SM-3) Block IIA into the Aegis BMD architecture. An additional $624.1 million was requested this year for the procurement of Aegis BMD technology including SM-3 interceptors, software, and installation equipment.

  • $59.7 million in FY 2018 procurement funds for Aegis Ashore in Poland
  • $852.1 million in for Aegis BMD
  • $134.5 million for Aegis Testing
  • MDA requests a total $624.1 million in procurement for Aegis BMD
    • $425.0 million to procure 34 Aegis SM-3 Block IB missiles
    • $38.7 million for advance procurement for long lead materials associated with the FY 2018- 22 SM-3 Block IB missile buy
    • $160.3 million for Aegis BMD Weapon Systems consisting of, Aegis shipset equipment, software and installation materials
    • $96.3 million of Operation and Maintenance (O&M) funding for the Aegis BMD program



$230.2 million was requested for THAAD (Terminal High Altitude Area Defense) development efforts including software upgrades, improved interceptor capability, and integration of THAAD into the Integrated Air and Missile Defense Battle Command System (IBCS) planning process. An additional $451.6 million is requested for procurement of THAAD equipment, including 34 THAAD interceptors.

  • $230.2 million for BMD Terminal Defense, THAAD development efforts
  • $36.2 million for Terminal Defense Testing
  • $451.6 million to continue procurement of THAAD equipment, including 34 THAAD interceptors in FY 2018
  • $78.8 million of Operations and Maintenance



  • $128.4 million for Technology Maturation Initiatives
  • $252.9 million for the Common Kill Vehicle Technology Program
  • $20.2 million for the Advanced Research Program
  • $13.0 million for the Advanced Concepts & Performance Assessment effort
  • $17.0 million in the BMD Space program for the Space-based Kill Assessment
  • $34.9 million for Space Tracking and Surveillance System (STSS) satellite operations and sustainment


  • $191.1 million to sustain Cobra Dane, the Upgraded Early Warning Radars (UEWR), and the AN/TPY-2 radars
  • $213.5 million to develop advanced discrimination algorithms for the AN/TPY-2, Cobra Dane, Sea Based X-Band, and the UEWR radars to counter evolving threats
  • $430.1 million to sustain the current C2BMC global capability (Spiral 6.4) and complete development and fielding of enhanced tracking, discrimination, and battle management capability to support homeland and regional missile defense in 2018 (Spiral 8.2-1)
  • $200.2 million to perform the systems engineering required to design, build, test, assess and field the integrated BMDS
  • $75.3 million for Hypersonic Defense activities
  • $9.7 million to complete Aegis SM-3 Block IIA Cooperative Development Program


Earlier this week, U.S. Senators Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), Dan Sullivan (R-Alaska), Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Gary Peters (D-Michigan), Tom Cotton (R-Arkansas), Joe Manchin (D-West Virginia), Marco Rubio (R-Florida), and Shelley Moore Capito (R-West Virginia) introduced a bipartisan bill to increase and influence the 2018 budget request release by President Trump. Called the Advancing America’s Missile Defense (AAMD) Act of 2017, the bill highlights the growing ballistic missile threat from North Korea and the subsequent need to improve America’s missile defense capabilities.

Click here to review the AAMD Act of 2017.

Overview of the AAMD Act of 2017

  • Integrated Missile Defense: Promotes an integrated, layered ballistic missile defense system incorporating THAAD, Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense, Aegis Ashore, and Patriot Air and Missile Defense Systems.
  • Space Based Sensors: Accelerates the development and deployment of a space-based sensor layer.
  • Missile Defense Tech Development: Accelerates the development and deployment of advanced interceptor technologies (RKV, MOKV, C3 Booster).
  • Additional Interceptors: Authorizes an additional 28 Ground-Based Interceptors (GBIs).
  • East Coast / Midwest Site: Accelerates the completion of the EIS for an interceptor site on the East Coast and in the Midwest of the U.S.
  • Missile Defense Testing: Authorizes additional missile defense testing and expresses the need to change current test culture at the Missile Defense Agency
  • Future Investments: Mandates a DoD report on additional interceptions distributed across the U.S., requires specifics on their optimal locations, and studies the possibility of transportable GBIs.

Notably absent from this year’s budget request and the AAMD Act of 2017 is funding for the activation of missile defense assets in Hawaii to better defend the Hawaiian Islands from ballistic missile threats. While $21 million is requested for Homeland Defense Radar – Hawaii (HDR-H) in MDA’s FY18 budget request, no funding is requested for emergency activation and operationalization of the Aegis Ashore test site at Pacific Missile Range Facility (PMRF) in Kauai, Hawaii.

The state of Hawaii – its 1.4 million United States citizens, home of the Pacific Fleet, the U.S. Army Pacific, the Pacific Air Forces, and the Pacific Command – as the closest state and major U.S. population to North Korea, makes it a priority target for North Korea. Having additional missile defense capability in Hawaii changes the calculus of North Korea, adds an additional stressor to North Korea in the intent of the United States to not tolerate a nuclear ballistic capable threat from North Korea, and most importantly gives more confidence and safety to those that live on the Hawaiian Islands. Despite this reality, neither the FY18 budget request nor the AAMD Act of 2017 called for the emergency activation of missile defense assets already in place at PMRF; assets that, if activated, could greatly enhance Hawaii’s defense against ballistic missiles.


Mission Statement

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.