Air Force Seeks New Land-Based and Air-Launched Nukes

The Air Force is soliciting industry proposals to build a new fleet of long-range nuclear missiles as well as replacements for its air-launched nuclear cruise missile force.

The two projects are part of a near-total rebuild of the nation’s nuclear arsenal expected to cost hundreds of billions of dollars over 30 years.

The Air Force said Friday that it intends to award the first contracts for a new-generation intercontinental ballistic missile, or ICBM, next summer. It would replace the existing Minuteman 3 ICBMs. The estimated cost is $62.3 billion.

The Air Force also is requesting contractor proposals for a new-generation nuclear cruise missile. It provided no cost estimate.

The Navy wants to build new nuclear-missile submarines, and the Air Force is planning a new fleet of nuclear-capable long-range bombers.

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