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Minuteman III re-entry (copy)

In this August 2015 file photo, a re-entry vehicle launched from a Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile from Vandenberg Air Force Base lands in the Marshall Islands. VAFB is scheduled to host another test launch of an unarmed Minuteman III missile Wednesday morning.

An operational test launch of an unarmed Minuteman III missile is scheduled for Wednesday, April 26, at Vandenberg Air Force Base.

The launch of the Intercontinental Ballistic Missile, or ICBM, is slated to take place between 12:01 and 6:01 a.m. The purpose of the test launch is to validate and verify the effectiveness, readiness and accuracy of the weapon system, according to Air Force Global Strike Command.

Col. J. Christopher Moss, the 30th Space Wing commander at VAFB, is the launch decision authority.

"Team V is once again ready to work with Air Force Global Strike Command to successfully launch another Minuteman III missile," Moss said. "These Minuteman launches are essential to verify the status of our national nuclear force and to demonstrate our national nuclear capabilities. We are proud of our long history in partnering with the men and women of the 576th Flight Test Squadron to execute these missions for the nation."

The 576th Flight Test Squadron will be responsible for installed tracking, telemetry, and command destruct systems on the missile.

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This report was prepared by Willis Jacobson. He can be reached at wjacobson@leecentralcoastnews.com.

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