The US Air Force announced on Tuesday that they have successfully launched a long-range, nuclear-capable ballistic missile after it was postponed twice, as reported first by Interesting Engineering.
Just after midnight local time, an unarmed Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) was launched over the Pacific by the Air Force Global Strike Command from the Californian Vandenberg Space Force Base.
EAST COAST, SOUTH KOREA – MAY 25: In this handout photo released by the South Korean Defense Ministry, a missile is fired during a U.S. and South Korea joint training exercise to fire a ground-to-ground missile on May 25, 2022 in East Coast, South Korea. North Korea fired three ballistic missiles toward the East Sea on Wednesday, including an apparent intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM), South Korea’s military said, just a day after U.S. President Joe Biden wrapped up his Asia trip highlighting America’s security commitment to Seoul and Tokyo.
Readiness and Reliability of The Weapon System
The US conducts frequent test launches to demonstrate to its allies that its nuclear deterrent is reliable, secure, and capable of thwarting threats in the twenty-first century.
These experiments have been run more than 300 times previously, and they have nothing to do with the current state of the world.
The ICBM’s reentry vehicle flew 4,200 miles (6,759 kilometers) to Kwajalein Atoll in the Marshall Islands. These test launches demonstrate the ICBM weapon system’s accuracy and dependability and provide crucial data for preserving a secure, effective, and safe nuclear deterrence.
Col. Chris Cruise, 576th Flight Test Squadron Commander, said in a statement:
“This scheduled test launch is demonstrative of how our nation’s ICBM fleet illustrates our readiness and reliability of the weapon system. It is also a great platform to show the skill sets and expertise of our strategic weapons maintenance personnel and of our missile crews who maintain an unwavering vigilance to defend the homeland.”
After several months of preparation, including several government partners, the test launch signals the end of that process. Those who performed this vital duty were among the best-trained and most educated airmen in the Air Force.
Nuclear Deterrence Mission
Task Force Commander Maj. Armand Wong said that their test launches are meticulously planned and are not a response to world events.
“Our best Airmen from each of the three missile wings worked in conjunction with the 576th Flight Test Squadron to proudly showcase some very technical skills that comprise the heart of our nuclear deterrence mission,” Wong added.
The U.S. Departments of Defense, Energy, and Industry make up the ICBM community. These departments analyze the data from these tests launched to assess the development of the country’s force continuously.
The ICBM test launch program demonstrates Minuteman III’s effectiveness, ensuring that the US can continue to maintain a formidable nuclear deterrent as a vital element of both its national security and the security of its allies.
Written by Joaquin Victor Tacla