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Accession Number ADA584462
Title Conventional Prompt Global Strike and Long-Range Ballistic Missiles: Background and Issues.
Publication Date Feb 2012
Media Count 44p
Personal Author A. F. Woolf
Abstract Prompt global strike (PGS) would allow the United States to strike targets anywhere on Earth with conventional weapons in as little as an hour. This capability may bolster U.S. efforts to deter and defeat adversaries by allowing the United States to attack high-value targets or 'fleeting targets' at the start of or during a conflict. Congress has generally supported the PGS mission, but it has restricted funding and suggested some changes in funding for specific programs. Many analysts believe that the United States should use long-range ballistic missiles armed with conventional warheads for the PGS mission. These weapons would not substitute for nuclear weapons in the U.S. war plan but would, instead, provide a 'niche' capability, with a small number of weapons directed against select, critical targets, which might expand the range of U.S. conventional options. Some analysts, however, have raised concerns about the possibility that U.S. adversaries might misinterpret the launch of a missile with conventional warheads and conclude that the missiles carry nuclear weapons. DoD is considering a number of systems that might provide the United States with long-range strike capabilities. Although the Air Force Conventional Strike Missile is a key contender for the CPGS mission, the Air Force may not be able to deploy this system until later in this decade, as the hypersonic glide vehicle has not yet had a successful test flight. Hence, Congress may review other weapons options for the PGS mission. These include not only ballistic missiles and boost-glide systems, but also bombers, cruise missiles, and possibly scramjets or other advanced technologies. Finally, Congress is likely to question how the New START Treaty, signed by the United States and Russia in April 2010, would affect U.S. plans for the CPGS mission. Warheads deployed on boost-glide systems would not be affected by the treaty because these are new types of strategic offensive arms.
Keywords Air force
Arms control
Bomber aircraft
Boost glide vehicles
Cruise missiles
Flight testing
Hypersonic test vehicles
Intercontinental ballistic missiles
Long range(Distance)
Prompt global strike mission
Reentry vehicles
Strategic weapons
Strike warfare
Submarine launched

Source Agency Non Paid ADAS
NTIS Subject Category 74 - Military Sciences
74G - Military Operations, Strategy, & Tactics
Corporate Author Congressional Research Service, Washington, DC.
Document Type Technical report
Title Note Congressional rept.
NTIS Issue Number 1402
Contract Number N/A

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