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Northrop Grumman To Provide Ongoing Launcher Support For Trident II Nuclear Missiles

The contract includes support of 14 Ohio-class U.S. submarines (SSBN-730 through SSBN-743) and up to four U.K. submarines (Vanguard-class). Also included is support for the conversion of the first four Ohio-class submarines (SSBN-726 through SSBN-729) to a conventional weapon system (SSGN, nuclear-powered guided missile submarine).
by Staff Writers
Sunnyvale CA (SPX) Jan 17, 2007
Northrop Grumman will provide ongoing technical support for the Trident II (D5) missile weapon system. The Trident weapon system is launched from SSBNs, nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarines, and is deployed by both the United States and the United Kingdom.

Under the terms $40.4 million contract, Northrop Grumman's Marine Systems business unit, located in Sunnyvale, will provide full life-cycle support including systems engineering support, logistics, underwater launcher technology sustainment and launcher training services for both the U.S. and the U.K.

The contract scope also includes life extension activities such as extended refueling shipyard field engineering support, hardware production and production restart planning efforts. Most of the work will be performed in Sunnyvale with additional work to be performed at field site locations in Norfolk, Va.; Bremerton, Wash.; and Kings Bay, Ga.

Northrop Grumman Marine Systems originally provided SSP with the Trident II (D5) missile launcher system during the 1980s and 1990s and has been SSP's sole supplier of launchers for the U.S. Navy's fleet ballistic missile program since 1956, including development of the launch system for the original POLARIS weapon system.

"Upgrading our Trident-equipped submarines provides capability to the Navy's underwater arsenal," said David Perry, vice president of Northrop Grumman's Marine Systems business unit. "We are proud to continue being the premier source of the technical expertise needed for this key program."

The contract includes support of 14 Ohio-class U.S. submarines (SSBN-730 through SSBN-743) and up to four U.K. submarines (Vanguard-class). Also included is support for the conversion of the first four Ohio-class submarines (SSBN-726 through SSBN-729) to a conventional weapon system (SSGN, nuclear-powered guided missile submarine).

This conversion replaces each single-missile launcher with Northrop Grumman's Multiple All-Up-Round Canister, which can hold and launch seven Tomahawk missiles. The conversion will allow the Navy to respond to a greater variety of military threats.

The sole-source contract contains an as yet-unfunded option of $29 million for the fiscal year of 2007 plus duplicate options of $40 million and $29 million for 2008. If all options are exercised, the total potential contract value would be $139 million through 2010. The U.K. submarines would be serviced through the Navy rather than directly by Northrop Grumman.

Northrop Grumman Marine Systems will develop and implement upgrades and technology insertions into the missile launcher subsystems, maintaining both the capability and the critical expertise while staying abreast of environmental and other issues.

Related Links
Learn about nuclear weapons doctrine and defense at SpaceWar.com

Britain Pre-Empting Nuclear Weapons Vote
London (AFP) Jan 16, 2007
An anti-nuclear group on Tuesday claimed the British government is already working on new warheads for the country's Trident missile nuclear deterrent even before parliament has voted on the matter. But the Ministry of Defence dismissed the claim by the Aldermaston Women's Peace Campaign (AWPC), saying it was simply wrong, while the ruling Labour Party said it was a conspiracy theory.







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