U.S. missile intercept test successful in Pacific
The test was part of an integrated exercise of the ground-based midcourse defense element of the U.S. Ballistic Missile Defense System. The Missile Defense Agency worked with the U.S. Navy, U.N. Northern Command, Integrated Missile Defense, the Joint Functional Component Command and the U.S. Air Force 30th Space Wing for the exercise.
"I am very proud of the government and industry team conducting the test today," Navy Vice Adm. James Syring, the Missile Defense Agency's director, said. "Their professionalism and dedication made this test a success. (The successful test) is a very important step in our continuing efforts to improve and increase the reliability of our homeland ballistic missile defense system."
During the exercise, a long-range ground-based interceptor launched from the Vandenberg Air Force Base in California intercepted an intermediate-range ballistic missile target launched from the U.S. Army's Reagan Test Site on the Kwajalein Atoll. The DoD said the test will provide necessary data to assess the performance of multiple ballistic missile defense elements for homeland defense.
"We'll continue efforts to ensure our deployed ground-based interceptors and our overall homeland defensive architecture continue to provide the warfighter an effective and dependable system to defend the country," Syring said.
The exercise was the 65th successful hit-to-kill intercept out of 81 attempts since 2001 for the Ballistic Missile Defense System.