DoD News Briefing

Thursday, December 11, 1997 - 1:45 p.m.
Mr. Kenneth H. Bacon, ASD (PA)


Q: Recently there was a lot of discussion about the test of the MIRACL laser against a satellite. I read a published account recently which suggested that there was, in fact, another test of a different laser. Can you sort that out for me and tell us, was there a separate test of a different laser? Is this part of the same test?

A: It's part of the same test. There were two lasers, a lower power laser and the MIRACL, which was higher power. As I understand it, this is... It was always planned that these two lasers would be involved and that the lower power laser, which was called the low power chemical laser, was used in the early stages and it was supposed to be used for tracking or something, and then the MIRACL was supposed to kick in. In fact the lower power laser I think was used for longer than anticipated because of some technical problems with the MIRACL. But I'd be glad to get you a fuller explanation of this.

Q: In fact did this lower power laser, which the published accounts said was 30 watts, in fact blind the satellite?

A: I'd like to check the facts and get back to you on it. I've seen the account as well, but I just don't have the answer to that.



Press: Thank you.