Navy: Back to the Drawing Board

Back to the Drawing Board

Tipped with twelve nuclear warheads and carrying a price tag of $26.5 million each, the Trident II submarine-launched missile is supposed to give the U.S. the ability to destroy Soviet ICBMs still nestled in their silos. But hopes for the Trident's scheduled deployment in 1990 were set back last week when the weapon exploded during a test firing on the open sea. It was the second failure in three attempts; embarrassed Navy officials admitted that the probable reason for the misfires was a design flaw that should have been corrected on the drawing board.

Because the new Trident is about 10...

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