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Missile Successfully Test Launched From Central Coast

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(U.S. Air Force Photo By Senior Airman Clayton Wear)
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A Minuteman III missile is test launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base Wednesday morning.

An unarmed intercontinental ballistic missile was successfully test launched from the Central Coast Wednesday morning.  The 12:33 a.m. Minuteman III missile launch from Vandenberg Air Force Base was visible throughout much of the state.

It's the first launch of the year from the base.  U.S. Air Force officials say it's also the first since the base became part of the new military branch called the U.S. Space Force.

It was a developmental test launch, differing from routine test launches in that a spare missile was used to check the fight worthiness of new or replacement components.  Air Force teams from Montana, Wyoming, and North Dakota took part in the mission.

The missile's unarmed reentry vehicle was successfully deployed more than 4,000 miles away to a test range in the South Pacific.