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​The Air Force’s Ground Based Strategic Deterrent, which will eventually replace the service’s aging intercontinental ballistic missiles, received milestone A approval on Aug. 23, moving the program into the next phase of acquisition, according to a release. GBSD will now enter the technology maturation and risk reduction phase, where the Air Force anticipates awarding up to two contracts by the end of Fiscal 2017. The Air Force wants to keep the new system in service through 2075 and is expected to deploy it beginning in the late 2020s. The Minuteman III missile dates to the 1970s and was designed with a 10-year service life. Hill AFB, Utah, is managing the acquisitions process for the new ICBM. (See previously: Ground Based Question Mark from the July issue of Air Force Magazine.)