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Boeing developing new B61 tail kit

Nov. 29, 2012 at 7:26 AM

ST. LOUIS, Nov. 29 (UPI) -- A new tail kit for a free-fall nuclear bomb is to be developed by Boeing under a contract from the U.S. Air Force that is worth $178 million.

The contract for the design, development and qualification phase of the B61 (Mod 12) Life Extension Program is expected to last three years, Boeing said.

The B61 nuclear bomb was designed in the early 1960s and entered full production in 1968. The upgraded B61 (Mod 12) upgrade will feature new parts and improved reliability.

"Boeing has provided a wide range of reliable and affordable direct attack weapon solutions to the warfighter for more than a decade," said Debbie Rub, Boeing vice president and general manager for Missiles and Unmanned Airborne Systems. "We will apply our proven experience in tail kit production to this platform to effectively upgrade a vital deterrent capability."

Boeing said it will conduct work on the tail kit in coordination with the U.S. Department of Defense and the U.S. Department of Energy.

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