Posted by: forquilombo | January 25, 2011

Sea Based X-Band Radar (SBX), Pearl Harbor (January 24, 2011)

The Sea Based X-Band Radar (SBX) is a combination of the worlds largest phased-array X-band radar carried aboard a mobile, ocean-going semi-submersible oil platform. The U.S. Missile Defense Agency’s (MDA) Sea-Based X-Band Radar was designed to keep an eye out for rogue missiles flying toward the United States. The nine-story radar sits atop a self-propelled Norwegian oil platform and has been coming and going from Pearl Harbor for months.

At first glimpse the radar resembles ECHELON which was reportedly created to monitor the military and diplomatic communications of the Soviet Union and its Eastern Bloc allies during the Cold War in the early 1960s. ECHELON was capable of interception and content inspection of telephone calls, fax, e-mail and other data traffic globally through the interception of communication bearers including satellite transmission, public switched telephone networks (which once carried most Internet traffic) and microwave links. During the Bush Administration the ECHELON surveillance program threatened the privacy of U.S. citizens and violated the constitutional amendment designed to protect Americans from unwarranted government surveillance.

Today, the 280-foot high, $900 million X-Band Radar scans the horizon for potential enemy threats from nations like North Korea and Iran and also provides the nation with highly advanced ballistic missile detection that is able to discriminate a hostile warhead from decoys and countermeasures.


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