Posted: Sep 13, 2012 9:19 AM by Faye DeHoff
Updated: Sep 13, 2012 4:10 PM
WHITE SANDS, NEW MEXICO - We have an update on that unusual sight in the sky this morning over Southern Arizona.
White Sands Missile Range conducted a missile test today, producing a contrail visible from as far away as Phoenix, Las Vegas, Salt Lake City and here in Tucson.
The test caused a 'nonctilucent cloud', which is basically a rocket exhaust from a missile test.
The test of the Patriot Advanced Capability 3 or PAC-3 missile, was conducted using a Juno missile as a target. The Juno was launched from Fort Wingate near Gallup and flew to White Sands Missile Range to be intercepted by the PAC-3.
The sunlight lit up the contrail from the Juno, creating a light show. The Juno performed as expected. This was the 14th time a large ballistic target missile has been fired from Fort Wingate since 1998. The contrail has not always been visible from so far away depending upon the time of day and atmospheric conditions.
Range personnel coordinated the test with FAA and other authorities to ensure that the test was conducted safely. The White Sands work force is experienced in conducting complex missile testing.
White Sands Missile Range is member of the Army Test and Evaluation Command and is a premiere test location for the Army, Navy and Air Force, as well as foreign and civilian customers.
Check out the latest events FC Tucson has scheduled.
Help those in need this holiday season
Click here to submit a news tip to us!
Become a Facebook Fan!
Sign up on KVOA.com for newsletters, exclusive deals, and more!
Win! Win! Win!
Get news, weather and more on your smartphone and tablet!
Get texts for news, traffic, deals and more!
Stories and videos with Kristi's Kids
What's happening on News 4 @ 4
Let us help grow your business
What's on KVOA and when!
Contact info for our department heads
FCC Public File of Records, Reports, and More
KVOA's on air personalities!
Work at News 4 Tucson
Complete feeds of all KVOA.com stories