Air Force Global Strike Command successfully launched an unarmed Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile from Vandenberg Air Force Base during an operation test late Tuesday night.
"This first launch of the year demonstrates our ability to provide safe, secure range operations to our launch partners while maintaining a continuous state of readiness,” said Col. Joseph Tringe, 30th Space Wing individual mobilization augmentee to the commander. “The outstanding teamwork of the Airmen and Guardians here at Vandenberg is a true testament to the future of space operations on the Western Range and our ability to defend the United States and our allies."
The launch took place at 11:49 p.m. Air Force Global Strike Command says the purpose of the ICBM test launch program is to "validate and verify the safety, security, effectiveness, and readiness of the weapon system."
Vandenberg Air Force Base is located about 10 miles northwest of Lompoc, California.