U.S. Air Force proposes to replace dated missile system

WASHINGTON. The U.S. Air Force announced a request for proposals for its new intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) weapon system program to replace the Minuteman III system designed in the 1960s.

Photo by Senior Airman Ian Dudley courtesy of the U.S. Air Force.

The request for the Ground Based Strategic Deterrent (GBSD) ICBMs follows the weapon system's Engineering and Manufacturing Development (EMD) phase. It includes five production lot options to produce and deploy the system.

According to Air Force officials, the two contractors involved in the system's current Technology Maturation and Risk Reduction phase, Boeing and Northrop Grumman, will compete for the EMD contract.

The GBSD is meant to replace the aging LGM-30G Minuteman III ICBM, which first became operational in the mid-1960s.