Air Force tests unarmed Minuteman 3 missile with launch from California base

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VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, California — The U.S. Air Force has test-launched an unarmed Minuteman 3 intercontinental ballistic missile from California.

The missile lifted off from Vandenberg Air Force Base at 7:45 a.m. PDT Tuesday on a 4,200-mile flight over the Pacific to a target on the Kwajalein Atoll.

The Air Force Global Strike Command says the test was a success.

Col. Michael Lutton, 91st Missile Wing commander, said in a statement that the test was a visible demonstration of the nation's nuclear deterrent.

The statement says the Department of Defense will use the data collected from this mission for continuing force development evaluation.

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