Monday, June 25 , 2018, 1:18 am | Overcast 63º


Local News

Hurricane Weather In Pacific Forces 24-Hour Delay for Missile Test from Vandenberg Air Force Base

Hurricane weather hovering near Hawaii has forced Vandenberg Air Force Base officials to delay a Minuteman III missile test for 24 hours.

The test launch of the weapon with a mock warhead has been rescheduled to occur between 12:01 and 6:01 a.m. Monday.

On Saturday afternoon, Vandenberg officials announced that “forecasted hurricane weather over the Hawaiian Islands” would cause a delay.

The Minuteman missile is set to pop out of an underground silo on North Base and travel more than 4,200 miles to a predetermined target in the central Pacific Ocean near the Kwajalein Atoll in the Marshall Islands.

Unfavorable weather at Vandenberg or downrange in addition to technical troubles can delay missile tests during the countdown.

The Air Force regularly conducts test launches of unarmed Minuteman missiles to collect data about the weapon system’s accuracy and reliability.

Members of the 576th Flight Test Squadron at Vandenberg installed test-unique equipment on the three-stage weapon. The crew also includes maintainers and operators from Malmstrom Air Force Base near Great Falls, Mont.

Air Force Global Strike Command has approximately 450 Minuteman weapons on alert in and around Malmstrom, Minot Air Force Base in North Dakota and F.E. Warren Air Force Base in Cheyenne, Wyo.

The missile test will mark the end of a six-month lull in launches for Vandenberg due to work involving equipment used to monitor just-launched missiles and rockets.

Noozhawk North County editor Janene Scully can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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