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Press Releases
Press Release | Nov. 5, 2015

Update on JLENS Operational Exercise

On October 28, 2015, the Joint Land Attack Cruise Missile Defense Elevated Netted Sensor (JLENS) Fire Control System (FCS) aerostat detached from its mooring station at G-Field on Aberdeen Proving Grounds, Maryland, and eventually grounded in a wooded area in northeast Pennsylvania. 

The aerostat has been recovered in its entirety and is in the process of being transported to Aberdeen Proving Ground and Elizabeth City, N.J. as a part of the ongoing investigation to determine the cause of the incident.   

The safe and timely recovery of the JLENS aerostat could not have been accomplished as expeditiously as it was without the support of the Pennsylvania Army National Guard, the Pennsylvania State Police, Montour County, the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency, as well as representatives from Raytheon and TCOM.

A full investigation is ongoing and future decisions regarding the continuation of the operational exercise will be made following the investigation’s conclusion.

“The JLENS exercise is an opportunity to see how well JLENS can fit into the existing Integrated Air Defense System”, said Adm. Bill Gortney, commander of NORAD and U.S. Northern Command. “The JLENS aerostat offers our commands a means to do just that. If the investigation results indicate resumption of the operational exercise is warranted, we will work with the Army and the Department to review the way forward for the JLENS exercise in support of cruise missile defense capabilities of the National Capital Region” said Gortney.

NORAD is the bi-national Canadian and American command that provides maritime warning, aerospace warning and aerospace control for Canada and the United States. The command has three subordinate regional headquarters: the Alaskan NORAD Region at Elmendorf Air Force Base, Alaska; the Canadian NORAD Region at Canadian Forces Base Winnipeg, Manitoba; and the Continental NORAD Region at Tyndall Air Force Base, Fla.