Economical Target-1 (ET-1) missile

The US Army Space and Missile Defense Command / Army Forces Strategic Command (SMDC / ARST) has completed flight testing of the newly developed Economical Target-1 (ET-1) missile at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida, US.

The missile met all data collection objectives following its launch by the 25K transportable target launcher (25K TTL) from the Santa Rosa test site into the ocean area within the test range.

During the testing, the target missile’s flight trajectory was tracked by several sensors, including the Weibel radar system, a portable system owned and operated by Eglin Air Force Base that is known for providing detailed tracking and performance data.

SMDC / ARSTRAT technical centre flight test services chief, Bryon Manley, said: "The ET-1 provides a cost effective, rail-launched, theatre-class tactical ballistic missile target designed to supplement aging flight test inventories."

Designed to fill capability gaps for representative threat targets during testing, the ET-1 is a threat representative tactical ballistic missile that provides reduced target cost impact for operational test and evaluation systems and can also be used to test the Patriot Advanced Concept-3 (PAC-3) missile system.

The ET-1 was developed by the US Army in collaboration with the US Air Force (USAF) as a combination of excess government furnished equipment (GFE).

Manley said: "The body and motor are GFE, whilst the nose and tail assembly were assembled at Holloman Air Force Base in New Mexico, US, which makes the ET-1 vehicle economical."

Manley added: "Mission requirements for future ET-1 flight tests will be determined based on the results of today’s test."

Weighing 25,000lbs, the 25K TTL is C-17 and C-5 transportable, treaty-compliant rail launcher developed to support the US Department of Defense (Dod) operational testing of theatre-class tactical ballistic missile targets on national ranges.


Image: The 25K TTL launches the US Army’s Economical Target-1 missile Ballistic Missile at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida, US. Photo: US Army.