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US tests missile

The United States successfully conducted a ground-based Interceptor Flight test Saturday (January 26) from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. The test will provide data for the Exoatmospheric Kill Vehicle system to analyze its performance in flight. The test was done without a target missile, but the missile launched is designed to collide directly with an incoming warhead, performing what the U.S. Missile Defense Agency calls a "hit-to-kill" intercept. Saturday's test was done to provide engineering data to improve confidence for future intercepts. A three-stage booster deployed the Exoatmospheric Kill Vehicle to a designated point in space. The interceptor then executed a variety of pre-planned maneuvers after separating from the booster to give engineers performance data in space, the Missile Defense Agency said. Initial findings show that all components of the test performed as designed, the agency said.

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