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Missile Defense test a success

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- A Ground-based Interceptor, an element of the overall Ground-based Midcourse Defense system, was launched from North Vandenberg Saturday at 2 p.m. by 30th Space Wing officials and the U.S. Missile Defense Agency. The launch was part of a test to improve and enhance the GMD element of the Ballistic Missile Defense System. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman Yvonne Morales)

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- A Ground-based Interceptor, an element of the overall Ground-based Midcourse Defense system, was launched from North Vandenberg Saturday at 2 p.m. by 30th Space Wing officials and the U.S. Missile Defense Agency. The launch was part of a test to improve and enhance the GMD element of the Ballistic Missile Defense System. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman Yvonne Morales)

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- A Ground-based Interceptor, an element of the overall Ground-based Midcourse Defense system, was launched from North Vandenberg Saturday at 2 p.m. by 30th Space Wing officials and the U.S. Missile Defense Agency. The launch was part of a test to improve and enhance the GMD element of the Ballistic Missile Defense System. (U.S. Air Force photo/Joe Davila)

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- A Ground-based Interceptor, an element of the overall Ground-based Midcourse Defense system, was launched from North Vandenberg Saturday at 2 p.m. by 30th Space Wing officials and the U.S. Missile Defense Agency. The launch was part of a test to improve and enhance the GMD element of the Ballistic Missile Defense System. (U.S. Air Force photo/Joe Davila)

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- A Ground-based Interceptor, an element of the overall Ground-based Midcourse Defense system, was launched from North Vandenberg Saturday at 2 p.m. by 30th Space Wing officials and the U.S. Missile Defense Agency.

Col. Nina Armagno, 30th Space Wing commander, was the launch decision authority.

"Both the 30th Space Wing and the Missile Defense Agency worked hard to complete this important test," said Armagno. "This was an amazing first launch for the new year."

The launch was part of a test to improve and enhance the GMD element of the Ballistic Missile Defense System.

The test involved the launch of a three-stage Ground-Based Interceptor missile. It did not involve an intercept, and no target missile was launched. MDA will use the test results to improve and enhance the GMD element of the Ballistic Missile Defense System, designed to defend the Nation, deployed forces, friends and allies from ballistic missile attacks, according to an MDA spokesperson.