Why the Navy's New Ballistic Missile Submarine Will Be a Game Changer

Kris Osborn
By U.S. Navy photo by Photographer's Mate 3rd Class Chris Otsen - This Image was released by the United States Navy with the ID 050720-N-8921O-001 (next).This tag does not indicate the copyright status of the attached work. A normal copyright tag is still

Kris Osborn

Security, Americas

New sub, new missiles.

Why the Navy's New Ballistic Missile Submarine Will Be a Game Changer

While the Navy may ultimately engineer a replacement for its 1980s-era Trident II D5, the missile is being modernized with improved electronics, firing circuitry and targeting technology to arm the emerging Columbia-class ballistic missile submarines. When the time comes to build a new sub-launched nuclear armed missile, its design and configuration will largely be based upon the existing Trident, Pentagon sources have told Warrior. This is, in part, due to the long-term reliability the weapon has shown for decades.

(Washington, D.C.) Almost nobody knows where they are at any given time, yet nuclear-armed ballistic missile submarines quietly patrol dark domains of the undersea realm in strategically vital waters around the globe, bringing the prospect of unprecedented destruction upon potential enemies -- all as a way to keep peace.

Undersea strategic deterrence, intended to ensure a second, retaliatory strike in the event of a catastrophic nuclear attack upon the US, ultimately relies upon the accuracy, resilience and functionality of the Trident II D5 missile. Accordingly, missile tube construction, fire-control technology and tests shots of the nuclear weapon are intended to help the Navy construct and prepare its new Columbia-class submarines on an accelerated time frame.

The Navy is preparing to shoot its Trident II D5 nuclear missile from its emerging new Columbia-class submarine as part of a plan to complete the boat ahead of schedule in the late 2020s.

This first appeared earlier in 2019.

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