Air Force Global Strike Command Public Affairs
5/26/2015 - VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- A
team of Air Force Global Strike Command Airmen launched an unarmed
Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile equipped with a test
reentry vehicle from Vandenberg Air Force Base, California, at 3:37 a.m.
Pacific Daylight Time May 20.
The ICBM's reentry vehicle, which contained a telemetry package used for
operational testing, traveled approximately 4,200 miles to the
Kwajalein Atoll in the Marshall Islands.
Every test launch verifies the accuracy and reliability of the ICBM
weapon system, providing valuable data to ensure a safe, secure and
effective deterrent for as long as nuclear weapons exist. The launch
team, under the direction of the 576th Flight Test Squadron, Vandenberg
AFB, included Airmen from the 90th Missile Wing at F.E. Warren AFB,
Wyoming, and the 625th Strategic Operations Squadron at Offutt Air Force
Maj. Jacqueline Sartori from the 90th Missile Wing served as the Task Force commander for the launch.
"Operational test launches are an amazing opportunity for our Airmen to
see the results of their hard work first-hand," Sartori said. "This
launch will help us verify the reliability of our ICBM weapon system and
The launch was initiated by crew members from the 625th STOS, aboard the
U.S. Strategic Command Airborne Command Post E-6B aircraft employing
the Airborne Launch Control System.
Lt. Col. Grayson Higby, 625th STOS commander, said everyone on the test
launch team always looks forward to the end result. "The test marks the
culmination of dedicated individual effort as well as effective
coordination between multiple DoD organizations," Higby said.
F.E. Warren AFB is one of three missile bases with crew members standing
alert 24-7 year round, overseeing the nation's 450 ICBM alert forces.
The ICBM community, including the Department of Defense, the Department
of Energy, and U.S. Strategic Command will use the data collected from
this mission for continuing force development evaluation.