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What is the LRSO?

The LRSO—along with gravity bombs—form the “air leg” of the nuclear triad. Each leg of the triad delivers unique and complementary capabilities that together have served to prevent nuclear war for the last seventy-five years.

What is the LRSO missile?

Lockheed and Raytheon have been competing since 2017 on the design of LRSO, which will replace the nuclear AGM-86B Air-Launched Cruise Missile. The very-low-observable missile will equip the B-52 and B-21 bombers as part of the bomber leg of the nuclear triad starting in the 2030s.

What is the Air Force's LRSO program?

In April 2020, the Air Force selected Raytheon to serve as a sole-source contractor to continue development work on the LRSO program, which seeks to replace the service’s air-launched cruise missile.

When will the LRSO reach operational capability?

Both conventional and nuclear-equipped variants of the new LRSO weapon are required to reach initial operational capability in the 2030 timeframe. The LRSO will be integrated on the B-52H large-payload multirole strategic bomber aircraft and on the air force's new B-21 Raider long-range stealth bomber.

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