A Standard Missile - 3 (SM-3) Block 1A interceptor is launched from the guided-missile cruiser Lake Erie during a Missile Defense Agency and Navy test in the Pacific on Feb. 12. (Naval Air Systems Command via AP)
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PACIFIC MISSILE RANGE FACILITY, Hawaii — The Defense Department's Missile Defense Agency and U.S. Navy say they successfully destroyed a medium-range ballistic missile in the Pacific Ocean in a test of a defense system that uses satellites to detect and track threats.
Officials said Wednesday the test was successfully conducted Tuesday night in ocean waters northwest of Kauai.
The defense agencies say a single missile was launched from the Pacific Missile Range Facility on Kauai. A satellite defense system detected and tracked the missile and sent data to a guided missile cruiser nearby. The Lake Erie then launched a block missile, which intercepted and destroyed its target.
Officials say the system worked as designed. The defense system has successfully intercepted 24 of 30 missiles since tests began in 2002.