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December 3, 2014

Boeing to continue Minuteman III guidance systems delivery to USAF

Boeing has been awarded a contract to continue support for the US Air Force’s (USAF) LGM-30G Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM).

Minutemen III

Boeing has been awarded a contract to continue support for the US Air Force’s (USAF) LGM-30G Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM).

Under the terms of $46.8m contract, the company will continue to repair and supply the NS50 guidance systems for the Minuteman III weapon system.

The contract work will ensure that the weapon system is adequately stocked with spare missile guidance sets and remains on constant alert.

Boeing Guidance Repair Centre director Ellen Power said: "All major milestones and repair demands have been met on schedule while maintaining programme costs on or under targeted goals.

"Solid performance, superior support to the warfighter, and commitment to excellence provided the foundation in obtaining this award."

Boeing has been maintaining the guidance systems at its facility in Heath, Ohio, US, since 1998. It ensures the availability of spares for flight trials and nuclear hardness testing, with spares level requirements claimed to consistently be exceeded by 20%.

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Dubbed the navigational heart of the ICBM, the NS50 features advanced electronics that not only improve the in-flight reliability, but also the maintainability.

"The Boeing-built Minuteman III is a ground-based, long-range, solid-fuel, three-stage intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) designed to carry single or multiple nuclear warheads."

The Boeing-built Minuteman III is a ground-based, long-range, solid-fuel, three-stage intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) designed to carry single or multiple nuclear warheads.

The missile forms one component of a nuclear triad that is complemented by the Trident submarine-launched ballistic missile and by nuclear weapons carried by a long-range strategic bomber aircraft.

Having entered service with the USAF in 1968, the missiles are located in silos at the 90th Missile Wing at Warren Air Force Base (AFB) in Wyoming, as well as the 341st Missile Wing at Malmstrom AFB in Montana, and the 91st Missile Wing at Minot AFB in North Dakota, US.

Work under the contract is scheduled to run through September 2015.


Image: A Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile being launched. Photo: courtesy of US Air Force.

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