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Date: Tue, 4 Feb 1997 17:04:01 -0800 Subject: Spaceplane at Kirtland AFB? PENTAGON DEVELOPING REAL-LIFE "STAR WARS" FIGHTER A published report on Tuesday will reveal that aerospace scientists and engineers are quietly working on the first-ever military spaceplane. Reporter Lawrence Spohn of the ALBUQUERQUE TRIBUNE tells how the effort is being run quietly out of the Air Force's Phillips Laboratory on Kirtland Air Force Base in Albuquerque. "Phillips Lab is now directing construction of the world's first Airborne Laser Attack Aircraft, complete with a 'speed-of-light' laser cannon," writes Spohn. "From a perch high in the atmosphere, it is to be capable of knocking down -- STAR WARS laser style -- enemy missiles moments after they are launched hundreds of miles away." It is also hoped the military spaceplane will serve as a "force projection" tool. The project is already coming under fire. "The future appears to be one of discrete low-tech threats that ... do not require a spaceplane," says military analyst Steve Aftergood of the Federation of American Scientists. "It can be entertaining and provocative," he said of the spaceplane project, "but I do not see it as real-world." See ya around :) Jilain
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