Strategic Weapons: October 16, 1999


The first test of the Exoatmospheric Kill Vehicle in early October was a success, with a direct impact on a Minuteman-II warhead lofted toward Kwajelein Island from Vandenberg AFB in California. Analysis showed that any type of warhead (chemical, biological, or nuclear) would have been destroyed by the shock of the collision. The successful test used the intercept vehicle built by Raytheon. A competing design by Boeing is still in development, although that backup design might be canceled in a year or two if the Raytheon design proves itself.--Stephen V Cole


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