CHEYENNE – Northrop Grumman has been selected by the U.S. Air Force to modernize the nation’s aging intercontinental ballistic missile system under a $13.3 billion contract awarded Tuesday for the engineering and manufacturing development phase of the Ground Based Strategic Deterrent program.

The announcement confirms the company will be the one to replace the Cold War-era intercontinental ballistic missiles at F.E. Warren Air Force Base. A few weeks ago, Air Force officials announced F.E. Warren had been selected as the first site to have its missiles replaced – a step expected to generate more than 1,000 jobs in Cheyenne over the next two decades.

The Air Force Nuclear Weapons Center announced that the effort will span roughly nine years, and include weapon system design, qualification, test and evaluation, and nuclear certification. Upon successful completion of EMD, the Northrop Grumman team will begin producing and delivering a modern and fully integrated weapon system to meet the Air Force’s plan for them to become operational by 2029, according to a news release.

“Our nation is facing a rapidly evolving threat environment, and protecting our citizens with a modern strategic deterrent capability has never been more critical,” Northrop Grumman President Kathy Warden said in the release. “With more than 65 years of technical leadership on every ICBM system, our nationwide team is honored and committed to continuing our partnership with the U.S. Air Force to deliver a safe, secure and effective system that will contribute to global stability for years to come.”

Work on the program will be performed at the Northrop Grumman GBSD facilities in Roy and Promontory, Utah, as well as other key Northrop Grumman sites across the U.S. that include Huntsville and Montgomery, Alabama; Colorado Springs, Colorado; Bellevue, Nebraska; San Diego and Woodland Hills, California; Chandler, Arizona; Annapolis Junction, Maryland; and at other locations across the country.

Overall, the GBSD program will involve more than 10,000 people across the U.S. For more information, visit www.northropgrumman.com/gbsd.

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