The US Air Force successfully launched an unarmed intercontinental ballistic missile from California, the fourth such test this year.
Tests at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California are typically scheduled weeks or even months in advance, but this one came at a time of soaring tensions with North Korea over its trial of an ICBM last week.
"The seamless partnership of Team V and our Air Force Global Strike Command mission partners has resulted in another safe Minuteman III operational test launch", U.S. Air Force Col. Michael Hough, the commander of the 30th Space Wing who made the decision to launch, said in a statement.
A USA official confirmed Tuesday that a commercial airliner flew past the location where North Korea's latest ICBM would land - less than 10 minutes later - in the Sea of Japan on Friday.
Air Force spokesman Capt. Mark Graff said in a statement the launch "affords the Air Force the ability to assess the reliability of our ICBM force in order to maintain a credible nuclear deterrent capability".
Although the test occurred less than a week after North Korea staged its own nuclear weapon test, Air Force officials said Wednesday's launch was not a response to North Korea's actions.
Minuteman missiles are regularly tested with launches from Vandenberg that send unarmed re-entry vehicles 6,800 kilometres across the Pacific to a target area at Kwajalein Atoll.
In "direct response" to North Korea, the US flew two supersonic B-1 bombers with their Japanese and South Korean allies in the North Korea peninsula on Saturday.
Earlier on Wednesday, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson had said Washington was not seeking a regime change in North Korea and is not the enemy of the Kim Jong-un led state, the BBC reported. "We call for an end to testing and an end to nuclear weapons worldwide".