The Bang-Soak Theory of Missile Attack and Terminal Defense
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Analyses of the terminal defense of a set of targets by anti-ballistic missiles are generally conducted under the assumption that all attacking reentry vehicles are identical. This paper generalizes to the case where the attacking arsenal is mixed, the main motivation being that a mixed attack arsenal can contain decoys that are harmless to targets, but which can still "soak up" defenders. All defenders are assumed to be perfect, and the main focus of the paper is on cases where the attack is comparatively weak. A kind of Prim-Read defense results. A simple method for deriving an upper bound on damage is described and illustrated.
BangSoak.xls accompanies the paper "The Bang-Soak Theory of Missile Defense"This paper describes a spreadsheet-level model for analyzing attacks by a small mixed collection of ICBMs, perhaps including decoys, on a set of targets individually defended by terminal ABMs. The central questions are how a fixed supply of ABMs should be divided up among the targets, and the resulting effectiveness of the optimized defense. All ABMs are assumed perfect in the sense that each ABM eliminates the reentry vehicle at which it is aimed. Since the ABM assignments are apparent to the attacker, he can "soak them up" by presenting the appropriate number of his least effective reentry vehicles to the subject target. The target is then vunerable to any remaining "bangs" among the attackers.
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