Boeing Awarded USD$51 Million Minuteman III Guidance System Sustainment Contract


Boeing LGM-30G Minuteman III

Boeing has secured the rights to provide engineering support for the guidance system of the LGM-30G Minuteman III, a United States Air Force intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM). The contract is worth USD$51 million.

     

“Boeing's uninterrupted support will ensure the Minuteman III force remains safe, secure, and effective,”

assured Boeing Directed Energy & Strategic Systems vice-president Peggy Morse. "Since 1958, Boeing has stood alongside the US Air Force to design, develop, and test ICBM systems.”

The program is one of the military’s longest contracts, with its beginnings dating back to 1958. Within ten years, there were 1,000 Minuteman missiles in operation across six US sites. During their peak production, 39,700 people were working on Minuteman projects. The operations were done exclusively in their missile silos.

Boeing’s LGM-30G Minuteman III is a ground-based, long-range, solid-fuel, three-stage intercontinental ballistic missile designed to carry up to three nuclear warheads. The letter “L” indicates that it is intended to be launched from a silo. The “G” means it is designed to attack targets on the ground. The “M” means that it is a guided missile.

There have been three versions of the Minuteman. Version I made its debut in 1962, and was replaced by Version II three years later. Version III is the current version, and has been since 1970.

Some further details on the LGM-30 Minuteman include:

  • Weight: 78,000 lb (35,300 kg)
  • Length: 59 ft 9.5 in (18.2 m)
  • Diameter: 5 ft 6 in (1.7 m) (1st stage)
  • Warhead type: Nuclear: W62, W78, or (2006 – present) W87
  • Unit cost: USD$7,000,000

Since 1998, Boeing has been maintaining the systems at its facility in Heath, Ohio. They are the original equipment manufacturer of the guidance system, and have an outstanding track record of reliability.

"Our team has extensive design and test data knowledge, and a record of zero discrepancies in nuclear weapons-related material inspections,"

said Morse.

Boeing will continue to support the US Air Force with their extensive system testing, evaluation, and development.

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