Dec 27, 2012– Herndon, USA (Techreleased) – Northrop Grumman Corporation recently supported the successful flight testing of the U.S. Air Force’s Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) weapon system last month. The tests demonstrate and support assessment of the accuracy, availability and reliability of the weapon system.
This launch also marked the first test of a refurbished MK21 arming and fuzing assembly. The operational test was designated “Glory Trip 206GM” and proceeded as planned with the missile traveling approximately 4,800 miles in 30 minutes from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif., to the Ronald Reagan Test Site in the Kwajalein Atoll in the western chain of the Marshall Islands.
“Each operational test we conduct is critical to ensuring the safety and effectiveness of the Minuteman III ICBM weapons system, and they are especially critical when testing new sub-systems that will maintain the viability of the system through 2030,” said Tony Spehar, vice president and program manager, Northrop Grumman ICBM Systems. “The entire ICBM team, to include our teammates and the U.S. Air Force, should celebrate this success as we continue to support tests that ensure the safe, secure and effective performance of the land based portion of the strategic nuclear triad.”
The Northrop Grumman-led ICBM prime team includes Boeing, Lockheed Martin, ATK and more than 20 additional companies. The team supports the Air Force in overall sustainment of the Minuteman weapon system including development, production, deployment and system modifications. Northrop Grumman’s System Engineering Support team, located at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif., and Shreveport, La., provides engineering support to execute critical test and range support functions to Air Force Global Strike Command including analysis of the test article configuration as it relates to the operational force.