Ground-based Midcourse Defense (GMD)

2013 GMD Photos

Jan. 26, 2013 - The Missile Defense Agency successfully conducted a flight test of a three-stage Ground-Based Interceptor from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.

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2013 GMD Videos

Jan. 26, 2013 - The Missile Defense Agency successfully conducted a flight test of a three-stage Ground-Based Interceptor from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.

Jan. 26, 2013 - The Missile Defense Agency successfully conducted a flight test of a three-stage Ground-Based Interceptor from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.  

2012 GMD Photos

Feb. 25, 2012 - The first clear skies in days provide plenty of light as technicians prepare a Ground Based Interceptor for emplacement into Missile Field 2 at the Missile Defense Complex in Ft. Greely, Alaska. This historic event marks the very first GBI emplaced in the recently completed Missile Field. Photo by Ralph Scott, MDA Public Affairs.

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2010 GMD Photos

Dec. 15, 2010 - The Missile Defense Agency was unable to achieve a planned intercept of a ballistic missile target during a test over the Pacific Ocean today. The flight test included the successful flight of an intermediate-range ballistic missile target from Ronald Reagan Test Site on Kwajalein Atoll in the Republic of the Marshall Islands and a long-range interceptor missile launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.

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Interceptor Launch

Interceptor Launch Viewing

     
         

June 6, 2010 - A two-stage Ground-Based Interceptor (GBI) was successfully launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif. After separating from the second-stage booster, the exoatmospheric kill vehicle executed a variety of maneuvers to collect data to further prove the performance of the kill vehicle in space.

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Interceptor Launch        
         

Jan. 31, 2010 - The Missile Defense Agency conducted a flight test of the Ground-Based Midcourse Defense System. A target missile was successfully launched at approximately 3:40 p.m. PST from the U.S. Army’s Reagan Test Site at Kwajalein Atoll in the Republic of the Marshall Islands. Approximately six minutes later, a Ground-Based Interceptor was successfully launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif. Both the target missile and Ground-Based Interceptor performed nominally after launch. However, the Sea-Based X-band radar did not perform as expected.

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Jan. 11, 2010 - Lieutenant General Patrick J. O'Reilly, Missile Defense Agency, Director, visits the missile defense complex in Fort Greely, Alaska.

Alaska Ground-Based Interceptor  
         

 

2010 GMD Videos

Dec. 15, 2010 - The Missile Defense Agency was unable to achieve a planned intercept of a ballistic missile target during a test over the Pacific Ocean today. The flight test included the successful flight of an intermediate-range ballistic missile target from Ronald Reagan Test Site on Kwajalein Atoll in the Republic of the Marshall Islands and a long-range interceptor missile launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.

Dec. 15, 2010 - The Missile Defense Agency was unable to achieve a planned intercept of a ballistic missile target during a test over the Pacific Ocean today. The flight test included the successful flight of an intermediate-range ballistic missile target from Ronald Reagan Test Site on Kwajalein Atoll in the Republic of the Marshall Islands and a long-range interceptor missile launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.

June 6, 2010 - A two-stage Ground-Based Interceptor (GBI) was successfully launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif. After separating from the second-stage booster, the exoatmospheric kill vehicle executed a variety of maneuvers to collect data to further prove the performance of the kill vehicle in space.
June 6, 2010 - A two-stage Ground-Based Interceptor (GBI) was successfully launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif. After separating from the second-stage booster, the exoatmospheric kill vehicle executed a variety of maneuvers to collect data to further prove the performance of the kill vehicle in space.

Jan. 31, 2010 - A target missile was successfully launched at approximately 3:40 p.m. PST from the U.S. Army’s Reagan Test Site at Kwajalein Atoll in the Republic of the Marshall Islands. Approximately six minutes later, a Ground-Based Interceptor was successfully launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.
Jan. 31, 2010 - A target missile was successfully launched at approximately 3:40 p.m. PST from the U.S. Army’s Reagan Test Site at Kwajalein Atoll in the Republic of the Marshall Islands. Approximately six minutes later, a Ground-Based Interceptor was successfully launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.

2009 GMD Photos

June 1, 2009 - Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates talks to Col. Bond, U.S. Army, at a ground-based interceptor missile silo at Fort Greely, Alaska. (DoD photo by Master Sgt. Jerry Morrison, U.S. Air Force)

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Gates at Ft. Greely

 

2008 GMD Photos

Dec. 5, 2008 - A Ground-Based Interceptor is shown shortly after liftoff from Vandenberg AFB, Calif., on December 5, 2008. The launch, designated FTG-05, was a test of the Ground-based Midcourse Defense element of the Ballistic Missile Defense System. The missile successfully intercepted a long-range target launched from Kodiak, Alaska several minutes earlier. (Photo - Missile Defense Agency)

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Interceptor Launch

Interceptor Launch

Interceptor Launch

Interceptor Launch

Infrared Imagery

Target Launch

 

 

July 18, 2008 - The San Diego-based USS Milius (DDG 69), shown below. was one of several military sensors used in the July 18 Missile Defense Agency test, where a threat-representative target was flown from the Kodiak Launch Complex over the Pacific Ocean. The Milius used its shipboard radar to detect, track and feed information on the target to other command and control assets involved in the test. The ship also used its fire control system to conduct a simulated intercept of the target.

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2008 GMD Videos

Dec. 5, 2008 - A threat-representative target missile was launched from Kodiak, Alaska at 3:04pm (EST). This long-range ballistic target was tracked by several land- and sea-based radars, which sent targeting information to the interceptor missile. At 3:23pm (EST) the Ground-Based Interceptor was launched from the Ronald W. Reagan Missile Defense Site, located at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif. The interceptor's exoatmospheric kill vehicle was carried into the target's predicted trajectory in space, maneuvered to the target, performed discrimination, and intercepted the threat warhead.

Dec. 5, 2008 - A threat-representative target missile was launched from Kodiak, Alaska at 3:04pm (EST). This long-range ballistic target was tracked by several land- and sea-based radars, which sent targeting information to the interceptor missile. At 3:23pm (EST) the Ground-Based Interceptor was launched from the Ronald W. Reagan Missile Defense Site, located at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif. The interceptor's exoatmospheric kill vehicle was carried into the target's predicted trajectory in space, maneuvered to the target, performed discrimination, and intercepted the threat warhead.

2007 GMD Photos

Sept. 28, 2007 - A Ground-Based Interceptor is shown shortly after liftoff from Vandenberg AFB, Calif. The launch was a test of the Ground-based Midcourse Defense element of the Ballistic Missile Defense System. The missile intercepted a long-range target that had been launched from Kodiak, Alaska several minutes earlier.

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Interceptor Launch

Interceptor Launch

Interceptor Launch

Intercept

 

 

Sept. 28, 2007 - Target - A long-range Strategic Targets System (STARS) rocket is launched from the Kodiak Launch Complex on Kodiak Island, Alaska on September 28, 2007. The rocket was successfully intercepted by a Ground-Based Interceptor launched from Vandenberg, AFB, Calif., as part of a Ballistic Missile Defense System flight test.

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Target Launch

Target Launch

 

 

May 25, 2007 - A scheduled flight test of the long range missile defense system by the Missile Defense Agency was not completed and designated a "no test" when the target, launched from the Kodiak Launch Complex in Alaska, failed to reach the defended area, and the Ground-Based Interceptor, which would have come from the Ronald W. Reagan Missile Defense Site located at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif. was not launched.

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May 5, 2007 - Alaska National Guard members of Bravo Crew, 49th Missile Defense Battalion, operate the ground-based midcourse defense portion of the Ballistic Missile Defense System May 5, 2007, at Fort Greely, Alaska. The system has been manned 24/7 since achieving limited defensive capability in 2004. (Photo by Army Sgt. Jack W. Carlson III, Alaska Army National Guard)

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49th Missile Defense Battalion

 

2007 GMD Videos

Sept. 28, 2007 - A Ground-Based Interceptor is launched from Vandenberg AFB, California. The missile intercepted a long-range target that had been launched from Kodiak, Alaska several minutes earlier.

Sept. 28, 2007 - A Ground-Based Interceptor is launched from Vandenberg AFB, California. The missile intercepted a long-range target that had been launched from Kodiak, Alaska several minutes earlier.

2006 GMD Photos

Sept. 1, 2006 - A Ground-Based Interceptor is shown shortly after liftoff from Vandenberg AFB, California on September 1, 2006. The launch was part of a Missile Defense Agency test of the Ballistic Missile Defense System it is designing against threats in all phases and ranges of flight. The missile intercepted a long-range target that had been launched from Kodiak, Alaska several minutes earlier. The test was the fourth successful flight test intercept in 90 days for the Agency.

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Interceptor Launch

Interceptor Launch

 

 

Feb. 24, 2006 - A long-range Strategic Targets System (STARS) rocket is launched from the Kodiak Launch Complex on Kodiak Island, Alaska on February 24, 2006. The rocket was successfully tracked by the Beale AFB radar during the exercise, and target data, including a weapon task plan (firing solution), was successfully transmitted to the Joint National Integration Center in Colorado Springs, Colo. where it was inputted into the Command, Control, Battle Management and Communication system for the Ballistic Missile Defense System.

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STARS Rocket

STARS Rocket

STARS Rocket

 

2006 GMD Videos

Sept. 1, 2006 - A ground-based interceptor is launched from Vandenberg AFB, California. The missile, designed to intercept long range ballistic missile threats in the midcourse phase of flight, hit a target that had been launched from Kodiak, Alaska. This was part of a Missile Defense Agency test of the Ballistic Missile Defense System it is designing against threats of all ranges and phases of flight.

Sept. 1, 2006 - A ground-based interceptor is launched from Vandenberg AFB, California. The missile, designed to intercept long range ballistic missile threats in the midcourse phase of flight, hit a target that had been launched from Kodiak, Alaska. This was part of a Missile Defense Agency test of the Ballistic Missile Defense System it is designing against threats of all ranges and phases of flight.
   

Feb. 27, 2006 - A long-range Strategic Targets System (STARS) rocket is launched from the Kodiak Launch Complex on Kodiak Island, Alaska on February 24, 2006. The rocket was successfully tracked by the Beale AFB radar during the exercise, and target data, including a weapon task plan (firing solution), was successfully transmitted to the Joint National Integration Center in Colorado Springs, Colo. where it was inputted into the Command, Control, Battle Management and Communication system for the Ballistic Missile Defense System.

Feb. 27, 2006 - A long-range Strategic Targets System (STARS) rocket is launched from the Kodiak Launch Complex on Kodiak Island, Alaska on February 24, 2006. The rocket was successfully tracked by the Beale AFB radar during the exercise, and target data, including a weapon task plan (firing solution), was successfully transmitted to the Joint National Integration Center in Colorado Springs, Colo. where it was inputted into the Command, Control, Battle Management and Communication system for the Ballistic Missile Defense System.
   
   

2005 GMD Photos

Dec. 18, 2005 - On December 18, 2005 the eighth interceptor missile was emplaced at Ft. Greely, Alaska. Two interceptors are emplaced at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.

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Emplacement

 

 

Dec. 13, 2005 - On December 13, 2005 an operationally-configured Ground-based interceptor missile designed to protect the United States against a limited long-range ballistic missile attack was successfully launched. The interceptor missile was launched at approximately 3:04 p.m. (local time, December 14); (10:04 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, December 13) from the Ronald Reagan Test Site, Republic of the Marshall Islands, in the central Pacific Ocean. For this exercise, there was a simulated launch of a target missile from Kodiak, Alaska using data from previous launches.

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Interceptor

Interceptor

Interceptor

Interceptor

Interceptor

 

 

Nov. 3, 2005 - Successful static fire test of the Alliant Techsystems (ATK) Orion stage 1 rocket motor of an Orbital Boost Vehicle on 3 November, 2005.

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Static Fire

 

2004 GMD Photos

Nov. 11, 2004 - The sixth Ground-based Interceptor missile is lowered into its underground silo at Ft. Greely, Alaska on November 11, 2004. The interceptor is part of a missile defense system designed to intercept and destroy long-range ballistic missiles. Although the system will have a limited initial capability, it will be the first time the United States will have a missile defense system to protect all 50 states.

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Interceptor

Interceptor

 

 

Sept. 25, 2004 - The fifth Ground-based Interceptor missile is lowered into its underground silo at Ft. Greely, Alaska on September 25, 2004. The interceptor is part of a missile defense system designed to intercept and destroy long-range ballistic missiles. Although the system will have a limited initial capability, it will be the first time the United States will have a missile defense system to protect all 50 states.

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Interceptor

Interceptor

 

 

Sept. 22, 2004 - The fourth Ground-based Interceptor missile is lowered into its underground silo at Ft. Greely, Alaska on September 22, 2004. Two additional interceptors are planned to be emplaced by mid-October, for a total of six interceptors at the site. Two interceptors are also planned for emplacement later this year at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif. The interceptors are part of a missile defense system designed to intercept and destroy a long-range ballistic missile aimed at any of our 50 states. Although the system will have a limited initial capability, it will be the first time the United States will have a missile defense system to protect all 50 states.

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Interceptor

Interceptor

 

 

Sept. 15, 2004 - The third Ground-based Interceptor was transported to its silo and emplaced on September 15, 2004. The interceptor is designed to destroy incoming intercontinental ballistic missiles before they reach U.S. airspace.

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Interceptor

Interceptor

 

 

Sept. 4, 2004 - The second interceptor missile designed to intercept and destroy a long-range ballistic missile is emplaced into its underground silo at Fort Greely, Alaska on September 4, 2004.

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Interceptor

Interceptor

 

 

July 22, 2004 - The first Ground-based Interceptor is lowered into its silo at the Missile Defense Complex at Fort Greely, Alaska on July 22, 2004. The interceptor is designed to destroy incoming intercontinental ballistic missiles before they reach U.S. airspace.

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Interceptor

Interceptor

Interceptor

 

2004 GMD Videos

Jan. 24, 2004 - Sequenced video from Integrated Flight Test 13b.

Jan. 24, 2004 - Sequenced video from Integrated Flight Test 13b.;

 

Jan. 24, 2004 - Sequenced video from Integrated Flight Test 13b.

Jan. 24, 2004 - Sequenced video from Integrated Flight Test 13b.

2003 GMD Photos

May 2003 - One of the first two missile silos to be installed at Fort Greely makes its way to the post from Valdez, Alaska. Part of the Missile Defense Test Bed and Initial Defense Operations, the first silos arrived in May 2003 and were installed into 80-foot holes drilled last year. The silos were barged from the manufacturer in Vancouver, Wash., to Valdez and loaded onto a custom-built truck for the last 286 miles of the trip on land. The remaining silos and equipment will be shipped this summer and installed by the end of September 2003.

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Silo

Silo

Silo

Silo

Silo

Silo

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Silo

         

 

Feb. 6, 2003 - Target - Team Vandenberg successfully launched a Taurus Lite vehicle booster test Feb. 6, 2003 at 1 p.m. PST (4 p.m. EST) in support of the Ground-Based Midcourse Defense program. The booster, a Taurus/Pegasus/Minotaur derivative with no payload, was launched from atop a concrete pad rather than a silo.

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Launch

Launch

Launch

 

 

Feb. 6, 2003 - The Missile Defense Agency (MDA) announced today the completion last night of another successful flight test involving a new booster rocket designed to support the Ground-based Midcourse Defense (GMD) system to intercept and destroy long-range ballistic missiles of the type that could be aimed at any of our 50 states. This was a test of the primary booster to be fielded with the GMD system later this year, and included measurement of booster performance and the participation of an integrated architecture designed to detect and track a target missile, launch the interceptor missile, and provide detailed target identification, tracking and communication to the interceptor missile. No intercept took place, as the target missile was simulated for this test.

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Missile Setup

Launch

Launch

Launch

 

2002 GMD Photos

Dec. 11, 2002 - The Missile Defense Agency (MDA) announced Dec. 11 it was not able to complete a test involving the planned intercept of a long-range ballistic missile target over the central Pacific Ocean when the exoatmospheric kill vehicle (EKV) interceptor and the booster rocket failed to separate, preventing the EKV from engaging the target warhead in space.

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Kill Vehicle

Interceptor Launch

Interceptor Launch

Kill Vehicle

Interceptor Launch

Interceptor Launch

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Interceptor on Launch Pad

         

 

Oct. 14, 2002 - The Missile Defense Agency (MDA) successfully completed a flight test of the Ground-based Midcourse Defense (GMD) development program, intercepting an intercontinental ballistic missile target over the central Pacific Ocean in the Western Test Range. A modified Minuteman intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) target vehicle was launched from Vandenberg AFB, Calif., at 10:00 p.m. EDT, and a prototype interceptor was launched approximately 22 minutes later and 4,800 miles away from the Ronald Reagan Missile Site, Kwajalein Atoll, in the Republic of the Marshall Islands. The intercept took place approximately six minutes after the interceptor was launched, at an altitude in excess of 140 miles above the earth, and during the midcourse phase of the target warhead's flight. This was the fifth successful intercept and the fourth consecutive--in seven flight tests since October 1999 for the GMD program.

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Interceptor on Launch Pad

Kill Vehicle

Interceptor Launch

Interceptor Launch

Interceptor Launch

Interceptor Launch

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Intercept Imagery

Interceptor on Launch Pad

Interceptor on Launch Pad

     

 

March 15, 2002 - The Missile Defense Agency (MDA) achieved a successful intercept of a ballistic missile target on March 15, 2002. The test successfully demonstrated exoatmospheric kill vehicle (EKV) flight performance and "hit-to-kill" technology to intercept and destroy a long-range ballistic missile target.

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Interceptor Launch

Interceptor Imagery

Interceptor Imagery

 

2002 GMD Videos

Oct. 14, 2002 - Successful test involving a planned intercept of an intercontinental ballistic missile target over the central Pacific Ocean in the Western Test Range. A modified Minuteman intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) target vehicle was launched from Vandenberg AFB, Calif., at 10:00 p.m. EDT, and a prototype interceptor was launched approximately 22 minutes later and 4,800 miles away from the Ronald Reagan Missile Site, Kwajalein Atoll, in the Republic of the Marshall Islands. The intercept took place approximately six minutes after the interceptor was launched, at an altitude in excess of 140 miles above the earth, and during the midcourse phase of the target warhead's flight. This was the fifth successful intercept--and the fourth consecutive--in seven flight tests since October 1999 for the GMD program.

Oct. 14, 2002 - Successful test involving a planned intercept of an intercontinental ballistic missile target over the central Pacific Ocean in the Western Test Range. A modified Minuteman intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) target vehicle was launched from Vandenberg AFB, Calif., at 10:00 p.m. EDT, and a prototype interceptor was launched approximately 22 minutes later and 4,800 miles away from the Ronald Reagan Missile Site, Kwajalein Atoll, in the Republic of the Marshall Islands. The intercept took place approximately six minutes after the interceptor was launched, at an altitude in excess of 140 miles above the earth, and during the midcourse phase of the target warhead's flight. This was the fifth successful intercept--and the fourth consecutive--in seven flight tests since October 1999 for the GMD program.

 

March 15, 2002 - The Missile Defense Agency (MDA) achieved a successful intercept of a ballistic missile target. The test successfully demonstrated exoatmospheric kill vehicle (EKV) flight performance and "hit-to-kill" technology to intercept and destroy a long-range ballistic missile target.

March 15, 2002 - The Missile Defense Agency (MDA) achieved a successful intercept of a ballistic missile target. The test successfully demonstrated exoatmospheric kill vehicle (EKV) flight performance and "hit-to-kill" technology to intercept and destroy a long-range ballistic missile target.

2001 GMD Photos

Dec. 3, 2001 - The Missile Defense Agency successfully completed a test involving a planned intercept of an intercontinental ballistic missile target on December 3, 2001. The test took place over the central Pacific Ocean with a modified Minuteman ICBM target vehicle launched from Vandenberg AFB, CA and a prototype interceptor launched from Kwajalein Atoll.

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Target Launch

Target Prior to Launch

Intercept Imagery

Intercept Imagery

Intercept Imagery

Interceptor Prior to Launch

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Interceptor Prior to Launch

Interceptor Launch

Interceptor Launch

Kill Vehicle

   

2001 GMD Videos

Dec. 3, 2001 - Successful test involving a planned intercept of an intercontinental ballistic missile target. A modified Minuteman intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) target vehicle was launched from Vandenberg AFB, Calif., at 10:00 p.m. EST, and a prototype interceptor was launched approximately 20 minutes later and 4,800 miles away from the Ronald Reagan Missile Site Kwajalein Atoll in the Republic of the Marshall Islands. The intercept took place approximately 10 minutes after the interceptor was launched, at an altitude in excess of 140 miles above the earth, and during the midcourse phase of the target warhead's flight. This was the third successful intercept for the Ground-based Midcourse Defense (GMD) program, formerly known as National Missile Defense.

Dec. 3, 2001 - Successful test involving a planned intercept of an intercontinental ballistic missile target. A modified Minuteman intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) target vehicle was launched from Vandenberg AFB, Calif., at 10:00 p.m. EST, and a prototype interceptor was launched approximately 20 minutes later and 4,800 miles away from the Ronald Reagan Missile Site Kwajalein Atoll in the Republic of the Marshall Islands. The intercept took place approximately 10 minutes after the interceptor was launched, at an altitude in excess of 140 miles above the earth, and during the midcourse phase of the target warhead's flight. This was the third successful intercept for the Ground-based Midcourse Defense (GMD) program, formerly known as National Missile Defense.

 

July 14, 2001 - Successful test involving a planned intercept of an intercontinental ballistic missile target.

July 14, 2001 - Successful test involving a planned intercept of an intercontinental ballistic missile target.

2000 GMD Videos

July 8, 2000 - Sequenced video from Integrated Flight Test 5.

July 8, 2000 - Sequenced video from Integrated Flight Test 5.

1999 GMD Videos

Oct. 2, 1999 - Sequenced video from Integrated Flight Test 3.

Oct. 2, 1999 - Sequenced video from Integrated Flight Test 3.