This content is not available in your region

US missile defence test fails off Hawaii, officials say

US missile defence test fails off Hawaii, officials say
File photo: Air Force/Senior Airman Ian Dudley/Handout via REUTERS
Text size Aa Aa

By Hans Nichols and Alex Johnson 

A test of an advanced US-Japan system intended to knock intermediate-range missiles out of the air failed off Hawaii on Wednesday, administration officials said.

The Defense Department would confirm only that a test of the SM-3 Block IIA interceptor missile was conducted at the Pacific Missile Range Facility in Kauai. But the test failed, the two administration officials told NBC News.

The nature of the flaw — whether the missile missed its target or failed to launch, for example, or whether the problem involved targeting or control systems — wasn't revealed.

If it's confirmed, the flop would be the second straight failure of an SM-3 Block IIA test, after an interceptor in June failed to hit its target.

Records of the Defense Department's Missile Defense Agency report that 35 of 42 tests of the SM-3 since 2002 — not all of them Block IIAs — have been categorised as successes.

The SM-3 Block IIA, which can be deployed from land or ships as part of the Aegis Ashore Missile Defense system, is a joint US-Japan project designed to counter any missiles from North Korea or other countries in the region. Japan proposed to buy four of the missiles for more than $130 million earlier this month.

Euronews is no longer accessible on Internet Explorer. This browser is not updated by Microsoft and does not support the last technical evolutions. We encourage you to use another browser, such as Edge, Safari, Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox.