United States Code
USC most recently checked for updates: Jun 06, 2023
W93 nuclear warhead acquisition process
Upon receiving a concept definition study under phase 1 of the joint nuclear weapons life cycle for the W93 nuclear weapon, the Nuclear Weapons Council shall submit to the congressional defense committees a report that includes the following:
A description of the potential military characteristics of the weapon.
A description of the stockpile-to-target sequence requirements of the weapon.
An initial assessment of the requirements a W93 nuclear weapon program is likely to generate for the nuclear security enterprise, including—
adjustments to the size and composition of the workforce;
additions to existing weapon design and production capabilities; or
additional facility recapitalization or new construction.
A preliminary description of other significant requirements for a W93 nuclear weapon program, including—
first production unit date;
initial operational capability date;
full operational capability date; and
any unique safety and surety requirements that could increase design complexity or cost estimate uncertainty.
Not later than 15 days after the date on which the Nuclear Weapons Council approves phase 2 of the joint nuclear weapons life cycle for the W93 nuclear weapon, the Administrator shall provide to the congressional defense committees a briefing on a plan to implement a process of independent peer review or review by a board of experts, or both, with respect to—
the nonnuclear components of the weapon;
subsystem design; and
engineering aspects of the weapon.
Requirements for process
The Administrator shall ensure that the process required by subparagraph (A)—
all relevant capabilities of the Federal Government, the defense industrial base, and institutions of higher education; and
other capabilities that the Administrator determines necessary; and
informs the entire development life cycle of the W93 nuclear weapon.
Certifications and reports at phase 3
Not later than 15 days after the date on which the Nuclear Weapons Council approves phase 3 of the joint nuclear weapons life cycle for the W93 nuclear weapon—
the Administrator shall provide to the congressional defense committees a briefing that includes certifications that—— 1
1So in original.
phases 1 through 5 of the joint nuclear weapons life cycle for the weapon will employ, at a minimum, the same best practices and will provide Congress with the same level of programmatic insight as exists under the phase 6.X process for life extension programs; and
the proposed design for the weapon can be carried out within estimated schedule and cost objectives; and
the Commander of the United States Strategic Command shall submit to the congressional defense committees a report containing, or provide to such committees a briefing on, the requirements for weapon quantity and composition by type for the sub-surface ballistic nuclear (SSBN) force, including such requirements planned for the 15-year period following the date of the report or briefing, as the case may be, including any planned life extensions, retirements, or alterations.
Subsections (a) and (b) may be waived during a period of war declared by Congress after
Joint nuclear weapons life cycle defined
In this section, the term “joint nuclear weapons life cycle” has the meaning given that term in section 2538b of this title.
(Pub. L. 107–314, div. D, title XLII, § 4223, as added Pub. L. 116–283, div. C, title XXXI, § 3111(a)(1),
Jan. 1, 2021, 134 Stat. 4375; amended Pub. L. 117–263, div. C, title XXXI, § 3131(a), Dec. 23, 2022, 136 Stat. 3059.)
cite as: 50 USC 2538e