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Northrop Grumman completes IBR for US Ground-Based Strategic Deterrent

Northrop Grumman has completed the Integrated Baseline Review (IBR) for the engineering and manufacturing development (EMD) phase of United States’ Ground-Based Strategic Deterrent (GBSD), a next-generation land-based intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) weapon system that will be operated by the US Air Force (USAF).

Northrop Grumman was confirmed as the prime contractor for the EMD phase of the GBSD programme under the provisions of a USD13.3 billion contract awarded in September 2020.

The company leads a GBDS team, which includes Aerojet Rocketdyne (which will develop the large solid rocket motor and the post-boost propulsion system solutions for the GBSD), Bechtel, Clark Construction, Collins Aerospace, General Dynamics, HDT Global, Honeywell, Kratos Defense and Security Solutions, L3 Harris, Lockheed Martin, Textron Systems, along with other small and medium-sized companies from across the US defence, engineering, and construction sectors.

The EMD phase includes full system design, qualification, test and evaluation, and nuclear certification. Upon successful completion of the EMD phase, the Northrop Grumman-led team will begin producing and delivering a modern and fully integrated ICBM system to meet the Air Force’s schedule of achieving a GBSD initial operational capability (IOC) by 2029.

Finalised in early March, IBR is a critical EMD programme milestone that establishes the GBSD performance measurement baseline. The IBR achievement follows the successful completion in November 2020 of the EMD Baseline Review, which included an assessment of Northrop Grumman’s GBSD technical baseline, including user requirements, programme data, and configuration elements, and marked the first step in transitioning ownership of the allocated baseline to the government.

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