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MDA Reports New Missile Defense Radar on Track for Initial Operational Capability

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The Missile Defense Agency (MDA) has announced that a missile detection radar under development is progressing on schedule towards initial operational capability expected this fiscal year, Defense News reported Tuesday. 

The U.S. Air Force's Lockheed Martin-made Long Range Discrimination Radar (LRDR) is now in the process of installation at Alaska-based Clear Air Force Station, despite pandemic-caused delays experienced last year.

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) initially reported that USAF will not be able to fully procure the radar before fiscal year 2023, but MDA announced in late February that all critical production tasks have been completed.

LRDR is designed to detect whether an incoming missile carries a warhead or is only a decoy. The radar would generate precision metric data perform this function against ballistic missile threats. Lockheed also applied its open gallium nitride foundry model into the solid state GaN radar.