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Navy waits for satellite kill shot (10:30 p.m. ET)
CNN ^

Posted on 02/20/2008 9:07:08 AM PST by maquiladora

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Navy gunners in the Pacific were watching the sea and sky Wednesday, waiting for perfect conditions to take a kill shot on an errant satellite 150 miles above them.

hey have just a 10-second window to fire, a Pentagon official said, and may not be able to take their shot on their first opportunity at 10:30 p.m. ET Wednesday.

"It's not enough to say 'no,' but we're watching the weather," the official told reporters at the Pentagon. "It's on the margin."

The cruiser USS Lake Erie will get one 10-second window each of the next nine or 10 days to fire an interceptor missile that will destroy the faltering spy satellite before it can tumble to Earth and -- possibly -- release a cloud of toxic gas.

The Pentagon said the window of opportunity to strike the 5,000-pound satellite opened Wednesday, when the space shuttle Atlantis landed in Florida. The Pentagon wanted to be sure the shuttle would not be struck by any debris from a destroyed satellite.

But the official said conditions have to be perfect, and that was not the case Wednesday with swells in the Pacific Ocean west of Hawaii running slightly higher than Navy would like.

The National Weather Service forecast 12- to 15-foot seas west of Hawaii Wednesday with a storm developing in the area.

The United States plans to spend up to $60 million to try to destroy the satellite even though there is only a remote possibility the satellite could fall to Earth, survive re-entry and spew toxic gas in a populated area, said James Jeffrey, deputy national security adviser.

"The regret factor of not acting clearly outweighed the regret factor of acting," he said.

(Excerpt) Read more at cnn.com ...


TOPICS: News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: banglist; satellite; usa193; usslakeerie
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1 posted on 02/20/2008 9:07:09 AM PST by maquiladora
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To: maquiladora

Red Moon Rising.


2 posted on 02/20/2008 9:11:18 AM PST by gridlock (Proud McCain Supporter since February 7, 2008.)
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To: maquiladora

Target practice? No way. They want ALL the technology in that bird in pieces that could benefit no enemy of the USA. Would not surprise me to catch Bill and Hillary out there with a giant net on the water —— heck, those pieces could fetch a big bunch of campaign dollars in Commie China —— where is Johnny Chung when they need him?


3 posted on 02/20/2008 9:11:18 AM PST by EagleUSA
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To: maquiladora

Fair winds and following seas, sailors.


4 posted on 02/20/2008 9:11:41 AM PST by mpackard (Proud mama of a Sailor.)
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To: maquiladora

“The regret factor of not acting clearly outweighed the regret factor of acting,” he said.

Plus it scares the crap out of the russkies and chi-coms he later added.


5 posted on 02/20/2008 9:12:10 AM PST by jbwbubba
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To: maquiladora

Might shoot or might not depending on weather.


6 posted on 02/20/2008 9:14:02 AM PST by RightWhale (Clam down! avoid ataque de nervosa)
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To: maquiladora

Track the current position and travel direction of USA 193 on this web site.

http://www.heavens-above.com/


7 posted on 02/20/2008 9:15:52 AM PST by NavyCanDo
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To: maquiladora

8 posted on 02/20/2008 9:15:54 AM PST by gunservative
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To: maquiladora

For you lunar eclips watchers check this out.

http://shadowandsubstance.com/


9 posted on 02/20/2008 9:17:03 AM PST by NavyCanDo
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To: maquiladora
bad weather no shot?

please don't tell our enemies

10 posted on 02/20/2008 9:17:54 AM PST by GeronL (or maybe I just read too much)
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To: maquiladora

From Seattle Times:
The government issued notices to aviators and mariners to remain clear of a section of the Pacific just west of Hawaii beginning at 7:30 p.m. PST, indicating the first opportunity to launch an SM-3 missile from a Navy cruiser, the USS Lake Erie, in an effort to hit the wayward satellite.


11 posted on 02/20/2008 9:18:45 AM PST by NavyCanDo
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USS Lake Erie

12 posted on 02/20/2008 9:21:55 AM PST by A.A. Cunningham
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To: EagleUSA
They want ALL the technology in that bird in pieces that could benefit no enemy of the USA

I would be shocked if reentry and impact did not completely destroy anything of worth. I don't think surveillance satellites are hardened against reentry. So I think the hydrazine is a blind too. How can a fuel tank survive reentry when it's not designed for that?

Pure speculation; but if there were nuclear materials on board, they would survive reentry and would be detected by the folks in the neighborhood where it landed.

Otherwise, this is just an opportunity to test ASAT capabilities against LEO satellites. And we're taking it.

13 posted on 02/20/2008 9:23:10 AM PST by ModelBreaker
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To: GeronL

We tell them what we want them to ‘know’. Sometimes what we want them to know just isn’t true...


14 posted on 02/20/2008 9:23:38 AM PST by null and void (The less you know, the better Hillary looks.)
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To: maquiladora; magslinger

High seas? Bah! Shoot already.


15 posted on 02/20/2008 9:24:16 AM PST by neodad (USS Vincennes (CG 49) "Checkmate Cruiser")
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To: GeronL
bad weather no shot?

please don't tell our enemies

This is a totally different situation than an enemy attack. Since there will be multiple opportunities to make the shot, there's no reason to fire under marginal conditions. If there were only one chance to take the satellite out, I'm quite sure that they'd take the shot even in marginal weather conditions.

16 posted on 02/20/2008 9:24:48 AM PST by Bob
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To: maquiladora

This is just what you want to hear that we need to wait for good weather in order to shoot. I hope our enemies choose to shoot at us on a bright sunny day so AEGIS can do its job without any distractions.


17 posted on 02/20/2008 9:26:29 AM PST by GreyWolf (My $.02)
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To: maquiladora
Wouldn't it make more sense to launch the shuttle with some kind of missile on board and take it out while in space then to wait for good weather and shoot it down from the surface?
18 posted on 02/20/2008 9:35:16 AM PST by Mikey (Freedom isn't free, but slavery is.)
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To: GeronL

My thought exactly. Sheesh, do they think we are so stupid that we think some bobbing of the boat isn’t accounted for in the targeting ?


19 posted on 02/20/2008 9:35:39 AM PST by cinives (On some planets what I do is considered normal.)
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To: ModelBreaker

Yep.


20 posted on 02/20/2008 9:36:19 AM PST by cinives (On some planets what I do is considered normal.)
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To: Mikey
Wouldn't it make more sense to launch the shuttle with some kind of missile on board and take it out while in space then to wait for good weather and shoot it down from the surface?

NASA has a peace policy......really...Lots of peaceniks at that place that have no use for the military.

21 posted on 02/20/2008 9:40:33 AM PST by cbkaty (I may not always post...but I am always here......)
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To: Mikey
The plan is to hit a tank on the satellite carrying the toxic propellant hydrazine

This tank is 40 inches diameter. Hitting that would be remarkable.

22 posted on 02/20/2008 9:40:55 AM PST by RightWhale (Clam down! avoid ataque de nervosa)
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To: neodad
Green water over the flight deck?

LAUNCH AIRCRAFT!

23 posted on 02/20/2008 9:49:27 AM PST by magslinger (cranky right-winger)
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To: maquiladora

Missle misses. Explodes upon re-entry, leaving a trail of baked lasagna and missle parts across two oceans.


24 posted on 02/20/2008 9:58:04 AM PST by Fester Chugabrew
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To: RightWhale
Hitting that would be remarkable.

Yes, it would! That would make quite a statement, wouldn't it?

This is essentially another test mission, so I'm not surprised they're waiting for optimum conditions.

25 posted on 02/20/2008 10:06:08 AM PST by colorado tanker
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To: maquiladora
this might be a really stupid question since, i believe, the USS Lake Erie is stationed in the middle east, but would this takedown be visible in the states?

i'm planning to stay up to watch the lunar eclipse and viewing this would be icing on the cake.

26 posted on 02/20/2008 10:09:06 AM PST by robomatik ((wine plug: renascentvineyards.com cabernet sauvignon, riesling, and merlot))
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To: robomatik

This might help visualizing the geometry
http://www.heavens-above.com/orbitdisplay.asp?satid=29651


27 posted on 02/20/2008 10:12:24 AM PST by RightWhale (Clam down! avoid ataque de nervosa)
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To: RightWhale

If we do this it’s going to create a lot of upset folks around the world!

Will be fun to read the KOS and DU sites if this works!


28 posted on 02/20/2008 10:18:34 AM PST by NoLibZone (If the Clinton years were so great, why is Osama doing so well?)
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To: RightWhale

i guess i’ll have to be content with the lunar eclipse.


29 posted on 02/20/2008 10:21:32 AM PST by robomatik ((wine plug: renascentvineyards.com cabernet sauvignon, riesling, and merlot))
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To: maquiladora

"Navy gunners in the Pacific were watching the sea and sky Wednesday..."

30 posted on 02/20/2008 10:21:41 AM PST by GATOR NAVY (Your parents will all receive phone calls instructing them to love you less now.)
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To: NoLibZone

It’s the full moon, too, which means there are already a lot of people growing claws and teeth and showing a lot of white eye.


31 posted on 02/20/2008 10:21:59 AM PST by RightWhale (Clam down! avoid ataque de nervosa)
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To: EagleUSA

A couple days ago someone in this program mentioned the reverse engineering issues if intact pieces landed where they shouldn’t. The idiot infobabe — on MSNBC, I think — was shocked and asked, “You mean other countries could find parts of it and copy them for themselves!?!” (not verbatim, but close) Well DUH!


32 posted on 02/20/2008 10:24:39 AM PST by MayflowerMadam ("People, my foot! They're Democrats!" (from The Day The Earth Stood Still))
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To: NoLibZone

I’m sure KOS and DU will say either

a. It missed and the satellite actually blew up when it hit the atmosphere.

or

b. The missile was just cover for our ‘killer satellites’ that are in violation of some treaty.


33 posted on 02/20/2008 10:27:33 AM PST by Hazcat (We won an immigration BATTLE, the WAR is not over. Be ever vigilant.)
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To: maquiladora

http://www.heavens-above.com/orbitdisplay.asp?satid=29651&lat=0&lng=0&loc=Unspecified&alt=0&tz=CET


34 posted on 02/20/2008 10:33:45 AM PST by GOPJ (Rig satellites with small explosives - save $10 to $15 million...)
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To: GATOR NAVY
"Did you see that mother EXPLODE?!!"


35 posted on 02/20/2008 10:34:58 AM PST by Dumpster Baby (Eschew obfuscation)
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To: robomatik
the USS Lake Erie is stationed in the middle east

Middle east Pacific? No, middle west Pacific.

Also, the missile doesn't carry an explosive warhead and the missile's contrail will be far to the west of Hawaii.

But if it turns out it makes a great show for someone, that's fine by me!

36 posted on 02/20/2008 10:35:08 AM PST by steve86 (Acerbic by nature, not nurture™)
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To: ModelBreaker

I think that nuke (plutonium?) on board and ASAT test are the two most plausible justifications.


37 posted on 02/20/2008 10:36:06 AM PST by Atlas Sneezed (I wish my old tagline could have defeated even more RINOs than it did.)
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To: maquiladora

I had assumed that USAF would do the shooting with an ASAT. The fact that the Navy is doing.....from the surface!... with a Super Standard is just awesome.


38 posted on 02/20/2008 10:36:45 AM PST by DesScorp
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To: EagleUSA
Chung you can believe in?

.

39 posted on 02/20/2008 10:37:22 AM PST by OESY
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To: maquiladora

I hope they do this the first time, I really do.


40 posted on 02/20/2008 10:37:23 AM PST by The Mayor (The purpose of prayer is not to get what we want, but to become what God wants.)
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To: Mikey
Wouldn't it make more sense to launch the shuttle with some kind of missile on board and take it out while in space then to wait for good weather and shoot it down from the surface?

So, a year or two to develop a space launched missle we don't currently have, months to get a shuttle prepped, hundreds of millions of dollars, or just wait a day or two for weather? If we sent of the shuttle we would just pick it up and bring it back or move it to a new orbit. The shuttle has done that several times. It is just not at all cost-effective. The REALY point of shooting it down is to show the chi-coms and the russians that we can.
41 posted on 02/20/2008 10:53:04 AM PST by TalonDJ
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To: cinives
My thought exactly. Sheesh, do they think we are so stupid that we think some bobbing of the boat isn’t accounted for in the targeting ?

15ft seas (and accompanied winds) are not exactly ripples in a pond.

42 posted on 02/20/2008 11:10:31 AM PST by AFreeBird
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To: maquiladora

I hope that if anyone ever launches an attack against us, it’s done in good weather.


43 posted on 02/20/2008 11:13:35 AM PST by Moonman62 (The issue of whether cheap labor makes America great should have been settled by the Civil War.)
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To: AFreeBird
I hope they do this the first time, I really do.

That makes two of us. The Chinese are watching this with great interest. They successfully shot down a weather satellite in January 2007.

44 posted on 02/20/2008 11:18:10 AM PST by OB1kNOb (Maverick conservative without a political party.)
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To: maquiladora

Sure hope the Chinese first strike doesnt occur during high swells.


45 posted on 02/20/2008 11:19:07 AM PST by BurbankKarl
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To: OB1kNOb

The US shot down a satellite in 1985...


46 posted on 02/20/2008 11:21:19 AM PST by BurbankKarl
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To: A.A. Cunningham
"We interrupt this broadcast of 'Dancing With the Stars' for this Special News Bulletin..."

"KABOOM!"

"Now back to our regularly scheduled broadcast which is already in progress..."

47 posted on 02/20/2008 11:22:19 AM PST by Frank Sheed (Fr. V. R. Capodanno, Lt, USN, Catholic Chaplain. 3rd/5th, 1st Marine Div., FMF. MOH, posthumously.)
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To: TalonDJ

I would imagine there is a system already made to immediately fit in the cargo bay of the shuttle similar to the patriot launcher, besides we have aircraft like the Aurora that can get up real close, the bottom line is we do not want to tip our hand with our best or latest technology. Save the good stuff for when we really really need it.


48 posted on 02/20/2008 11:36:32 AM PST by Eye of Unk
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To: Moonman62
I hope that if anyone ever launches an attack against us, it’s done in good weather.

September 11, 2001...was a fairly nice day, IIRC.

49 posted on 02/20/2008 11:40:40 AM PST by Lou L
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To: AFreeBird

No, but the platform is not a 65 ft yacht, either. Give me a break.

http://www.fas.org/man/dod-101/sys/ship/weaps/aegis.htm

The AEGIS weapon system is billed as the most capable surface launched missile system the Navy has ever put to sea. Its weapons can be trained on targets at a wide range of altitudes from wave top to directly overhead, and is capable of engaging anti-ship cruise missiles and manned aircraft flying in all speed ranges from subsonic to supersonic. The AEGIS system has been employed in all environmental conditions, having both all-weather capability and the abilitt to operate in chaff and jamming environments.


50 posted on 02/20/2008 11:52:49 AM PST by cinives (On some planets what I do is considered normal.)
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