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News | Dec. 9, 2021

Long-Range Discrimination Radar initially fielded in Alaska

By Senior Master Sgt. Julie Avey 168th Wing Public Affairs

CLEAR SPACE FORCE STATION, Alaska -- The Missile Defense Agency (MDA) held a ceremony at Clear Space Force Station, Alaska, declaring the initial fielding of the Long-Range Discrimination Radar (LRDR), December 6, 2021.

The ceremony marked the completion of military construction as they finished installing radar arrays on the LRDR and transitioned to radar testing, training, and operations.

“MDA will integrate the radar into the Ground-Based Midcourse Defense system and the Command and Control Battle Management and communications system in preparation for formal operational acceptance by the U.S. Air Force in 2023,” said MDA Director Vice Adm. Jon Hill.

Once fully operational, the LRDR will provide unparalleled ability to simultaneously search and track multiple small objects, including all classes of ballistic missiles, at very long ranges, under continuous operation.

“Today marks an extremely important milestone for U.S. homeland defense,” said Hill.

The LRDR supports space domain awareness by monitoring satellites orbiting the earth, detecting, tracking, and identifying active or inactive satellites, spent rocket bodies, and fragmentation debris contributing toward overall, all-domain awareness.

“Alaska is the most strategic place in the world. Our location allows us a field of view we believe we need, especially against BMD,” said Air Force Lt. Gen. David Krumm, commander, Alaskan NORAD Region, Alaskan Command and 11th Air Force.

The LRDR, along with other sensors, further enhances the warfighter’s ability for early detection and identification of potential long-range threats to the homeland.

Vice Adm. Jon Hill, director, Missile Defense Agency, Lt. Gen. A.C. Roper, Deputy Commander, U.S. Northern Command, along with Lt. Gen. David A. Krumm, commander, Alaskan NORAD Region, Alaskan Command and 11th Air Force, took part in the monumental ceremony.