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W89

The W89 was an American thermonuclear warhead design intended for use on the AGM-131 SRAM II air to ground nuclear missile and the UUM-125 Sea Lance anti-submarine missile.

W89 nuclear warhead
W89 warhead (top)

What was to become the W89 design was awarded to the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in the mid-1980s. It entered Phase 2A technical definition and cost study in November 1986. It entered Phase 3 development engineering and was assigned the numerical designation W89 in January 1988.

The W89 design was a 13.3-inch (33.8 cm) diameter by 40.8-inch (103.6 cm) long weapon, with a weight of 324 pounds (147 kg) and yield of 200 kilotons.

The design was canceled in September 1991 along with the SRAM II missile, prior to production of any units, though some test devices may have been manufactured.

Contents

According to one source, the plutonium cores (technically known as pits) of the W89 warheads were planned to be reused from existing W68 warhead pits, which were surplus at the time.

Lawrence Livermore engineers have hinted in prior press reports that the Reliable Replacement Warhead design that they were preparing might be based on the W89 warhead design. On March 2, 2007, the NNSA announced that the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory RRW design had been selected for the initial RRW production version.

One of the selection reasons given was that the LLNL proposed design was more closely tied to historical underground tested warhead designs. It was described by Thomas P. D'Agostino, acting head of the National Nuclear Security Administration, as having been based on a design which was test fired in the 1980s, but never entered service.

LLNL staff have previously hinted in the press that LLNL was considering a design entry based on the tested but never deployed W89 design. The W89 warhead had been proposed as a W88 warhead replacement as early as 1991. The W89 design was already equipped with all then-current safety features, including insensitive high explosives, fire-resistant pits, and advanced detonator safety systems. The W89 was also reportedly designed using recycled pits from the earlier W68 nuclear weapon program, recoated in vanadium to provide the temperature resistance. The W89 warhead was test fired in the 1980s.

  1. BLUE RIDGE ENVIRONMENTAL DEFENSE LEAGUE Southern Anti-Plutonium Campaign, Accessed 2006-05-07
  2. Design Selected for Reliable Replacement Warhead Archived 2007-03-09 at the Wayback Machine, NNSA Press release, March 2, 2007.
  3. Govt. Picks Design for Nuclear Warhead, NY Times / AP, March 2, 2007
  4. Scientists Dream Up New Nukes, Ira Hoffman, Alameda Times-Star, Feb 6, 2006. Accessed March 2, 2007
  5. An Assessment of US Nuclear Weapons and related Nuclear Test requirements: a post-Bush analysis, URCL-LR-109503, R.E. Kidder, 1991. Accessed March 2, 2007
  6. Report to Congress: Assessment of the Safety of US Nuclear Weapons and Related Nuclear Test Requirements, URCL-LR-107454, R.E. Kidder, 1991, Accessed March 2, 2007
  7. Pit Tubes and Pit Re-Use at Pantex, in Plutonium: the last Five Years, Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League, 2001, accessed March 2, 2007

W89
W89 Article Talk Language Watch Edit The W89 was an American thermonuclear warhead design intended for use on the AGM 131 SRAM II air to ground nuclear missile and the UUM 125 Sea Lance anti submarine missile W89 nuclear warhead W89 warhead top What was to become the W89 design was awarded to the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in the mid 1980s It entered Phase 2A technical definition and cost study in November 1986 It entered Phase 3 development engineering and was assigned the numerical designation W89 in January 1988 The W89 design was a 13 3 inch 33 8 cm diameter by 40 8 inch 103 6 cm long weapon with a weight of 324 pounds 147 kg and yield of 200 kilotons The design was canceled in September 1991 along with the SRAM II missile prior to production of any units though some test devices may have been manufactured Contents 1 Reused plutonium pits 2 Reliable Replacement Warhead link 3 See also 4 References 5 External linksReused plutonium pits EditAccording to one source the plutonium cores technically known as pits of the W89 warheads were planned to be reused from existing W68 warhead pits which were surplus at the time 1 Reliable Replacement Warhead link EditLawrence Livermore engineers have hinted in prior press reports that the Reliable Replacement Warhead design that they were preparing might be based on the W89 warhead design On March 2 2007 the NNSA announced that the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory RRW design had been selected for the initial RRW production version 2 One of the selection reasons given was that the LLNL proposed design was more closely tied to historical underground tested warhead designs It was described by Thomas P D Agostino acting head of the National Nuclear Security Administration as having been based on a design which was test fired in the 1980s but never entered service 3 LLNL staff have previously hinted in the press that LLNL was considering a design entry based on the tested but never deployed W89 design 4 The W89 warhead had been proposed as a W88 warhead replacement as early as 1991 5 6 The W89 design was already equipped with all then current safety features including insensitive high explosives fire resistant pits and advanced detonator safety systems The W89 was also reportedly designed using recycled pits from the earlier W68 nuclear weapon program recoated in vanadium to provide the temperature resistance 7 The W89 warhead was test fired in the 1980s 5 See also EditList of nuclear weaponsReferences Edit BLUE RIDGE ENVIRONMENTAL DEFENSE LEAGUE Southern Anti Plutonium Campaign Accessed 2006 05 07 Design Selected for Reliable Replacement Warhead Archived 2007 03 09 at the Wayback Machine NNSA Press release March 2 2007 Govt Picks Design for Nuclear Warhead NY Times AP March 2 2007 Scientists Dream Up New Nukes Ira Hoffman Alameda Times Star Feb 6 2006 Accessed March 2 2007 a b An Assessment of US Nuclear Weapons and related Nuclear Test requirements a post Bush analysis URCL LR 109503 R E Kidder 1991 Accessed March 2 2007 Report to Congress Assessment of the Safety of US Nuclear Weapons and Related Nuclear Test Requirements URCL LR 107454 R E Kidder 1991 Accessed March 2 2007 Pit Tubes and Pit Re Use at Pantex in Plutonium the last Five Years Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League 2001 accessed March 2 2007External links EditUniversity of California 1989 nuclear weapons labs status report Allbombs html at the Nuclear Weapon Archive at nuclearweaponarchive org Retrieved from https en wikipedia org w index php title W89 amp oldid 1015572878, wikipedia, wiki, book,

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