News of the WeekBALLISTIC MISSILE DEFENSE

Sensor Failure in 1997 Test Sparks New Controversy

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Science  01 Feb 2002:
Vol. 295, Issue 5556, pp. 776
DOI: 10.1126/science.295.5556.776

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Summary

BOSTON-- A government investigation has found that much of the data from a 1997 ballistic missile test flight that the U.S. Department of Defense labeled a solid success may be useless. Sources familiar with two studies by the General Accounting Office say they highlight software and sensor problems on the 1997 flight over the Pacific. The wording of the reports is still the subject of fierce internal debate, but their upcoming release is sure to provide more ammunition for skeptics of the controversial ballistic missile defense program.

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