USAF requests proposals for a next-generation ICBM
By Doug Richardson
The US Air Force (USAF) Nuclear Weapons Center, Intelligence, Program Development & Integration Directorate (AFNWC/XZ) is soliciting white papers and proposals for concepts that could modernise or replace the ground-based leg of the existing US nuclear triad.
These concepts are intended to address identified and validated gaps or shortfalls based on conditions in which a future land-based strategic system will need to operate.
A Broad Agency Announcement (BAA) released on 7 January and updated a week later in response to questions submitted by US industry called for submissions to be made by 8 February.
Companies responding to the BAA are expected to adopt a 'system-of-systems' approach, covering areas such as the payload delivery vehicle, warhead integration, basing, and nuclear command, control and communications.
A modular, open-systems architecture is requested, offering commonality with intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBM), submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBM), any Prompt Global Strike/Conventional Strike Missile that may enter service, and space launch vehicles. An operational life covering the 2025-2075 timeframe is anticipated.163 of 1195 words
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