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Frank Kendal, undersecretary of defense for acquisition, technology, and logistics, testifies before the Senate Appropriations Committee's defense panel on April 20, 2016. Screenshot photo.

A request for proposal for the Ground-Based Strategic Deterrent (GBSD) program’s first phase is “a couple weeks away,” Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology, and Logistics Frank Kendall told lawmakers Wednesday. Kendall told the Senate Appropriations Committee’s defense panel on Wednesday the GBSD program, which is meant to replace the Air Force's Minuteman III weapons system, is on track. Risk reduction and preliminary design will be the first substantive work on the project, he said, and the Pentagon will work to cut costs in anticipation of having to fund the nuclear triad upgrade. "It’s going to be an expensive system by any metric,” he said, referring to the GBSD program. (See also: Funding the Nuclear Bow Wave.)