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Thursday, January 23, 2014

Size of Nuclear Arsenal Remains Stable

Weapons Complex Monitor January 22, 2014 Size of Nuclear Arsenal Remains Stable The size of the United States’ active nuclear arsenal has remained stable for the last year, according to a recent assessment published in the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists that estimates about 4,650 nuclear warheads remain in the active stockpile of the U.S. Another 2,700 warheads are retired and awaiting dismantlement, meaning the U.S. has a total inventory of about 7,400 warheads, the assessment by Hans Kristensen and Robert Norris of the Federation of American Scientists says. The U.S. hasn’t publicly disclosed the size of its active nuclear stockpile since 2010, when it said it had 5,113 warheads. About 2,130 warheads are operational, according to the authors, including 1,620 strategic warheads that are fielded on ballistic missiles: 1,150 on submarine-launched ballistic missiles and 470 on intercontinental ballistic missiles. Another 300 strategic warheads are housed at bomber bases around the country, and approximately 200 tactical nuclear warheads are stationed in Europe. About 2,530 warheads are in storage and serve as a “hedge” against technical issues or geopolitical changes.

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