Archive: Nuclear


W88 Warhead Upgrade Nailed Final Design Review, NNSA Says

A civil-military panel approved designs for an upgrade of the W88 nuclear ballistic missile warhead carried aboard U.S. submarines, the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) said Jan. 16. Panel members, drawn from within and outside of the Department of Energy agency, approved system-level designs for the W88’s upgraded arming, fuzing, and firing (AF&F) subsystem on […]

Kirstjen Nielsen being sworn  in as the new DHS Secretary on Dec. 6. Photo: DHS.

DHS Unifying Counter WMD Support In Response To Evolving Threats

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) on Thursday rolled out a new office that consolidates existing organizations that work to protect the U.S. against chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear threats to establish a more holistic and unified approach to combat weapons of mass destruction (WMD). “The United States faces rising danger from terrorist groups and […]

Northrop Grumman's B-2 bomber. Photo: Air Force.

Arsenal Modernization Means More Nukes, Perry Says

U.S. Energy Secretary Rick Perry on Thursday suggested that modernization of the U.S. nuclear arsenal includes increasing the number of weapons. In an energy policy discussion hosted by NBC and Axios in Washington, D.C., moderator Chuck Todd of “Meet the Press” asked Perry, “Does beefing up mean the same as modernization?” “It does to me,” […]


NNSA Finishes Mods For Cruise Missile Warhead

The National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) has refurbished the first in a line of nuclear warheads that will be used on an aging fleet of U.S. cruise missiles well into next decade. The semiautonomous Department of Energy nuclear stockpile steward completed the first production unit of the W80-1 Alt 369 “before fiscal year 2017 came […]

Cutaway of W76 warhead and Mk-4 reentry vehicle. Image: Los Alamos National Lab

NNSA Finishes Production Of Critical Non-Nuclear Systems For W76 Warhead

The National Nuclear Security Administration said Monday it has wrapped up production of critical non-nuclear systems required to upgrade the W76 warhead. The Department of Energy’s (DoE) semiautonomous stockpile steward said the milestone involves the W76’s Arming Fuzing Subsystem: a single assembly that includes “the weapon’s radar, programmer, and timer.” The NNSA did not say […]

The Air Force test launches a Minuteman III ICBM in September 2010. Photo: Air Force.

Air Force Taps Lockheed, Rockwell To Design ICBM Control System

The U.S. Air Force has picked Lockheed Martin [LMT] and Rockwell Collins [COL] to begin designing a replacement for the aging Airborne Launch Control System (ALCS), which allows command-and-control aircraft to launch land-based, nuclear-armed intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs). Lockheed Martin Space Systems and Rockwell Collins have been awarded three-year contracts valued at $80.8 million and $76.3 […]

The Air Force test launches a Minuteman III ICBM. Photo: Air Force.

Air Force To Hold First GBSD Review Since Contract Awards

The U.S. Air Force, which awarded two contracts last month to mature designs for the Ground-based Strategic Deterrent (GBSD), plans to hold the program’s first major review next month, a program official said Sept. 28. The system requirements review will ensure the prime contractors, Boeing [BA] and Northrop Grumman [NOC], fully understand the system’s requirements, […]


New NNSA Boss Could Be Announced This Month

The White House could announce new leadership for the National Nuclear Nuclear Security Administration before September is out, a source said Thursday. Frank Klotz, the current undersecretary for nuclear security and National Nuclear Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) administrator, has said privately his successor could be announced by the end of the month, according to an […]

Boeing's F-15 Strike Eagle.  Photo: Boeing

NNSA Reveals New Flight Tests For B61-12

The National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) on Monday revealed it tested components of the B61-12 gravity bomb it is developing as part of the U.S. nuclear modernization effort. The two qualification flights took place Aug. 8 at the Tonopah Test Range in Nevada, the NNSA said in a press release published on its website. An […]

Aerial view of Los Alamos National Laboratory. Photo: LANL

University of California ‘Likely’ Will Bid To Manage Nuclear Weapons Lab

The University of California, a senior partner in the management and operation of the Los Alamos National Laboratory, indicated Wednesday it is “likely” to make a play for a follow-on contract expected to go out for bids in September. “The decision on whether or not to bid rests with the UC Board of Regents and the board […]