What about nuclear missles in Central Asia?

greenspun.com : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

In reading this book I saw mention of problems with missles, but no details. I've also heard that the government has tested the year 2000 scenario in simulation on nuclear missle silos with unnerving results. Can anyone verify this? This apocryphal story at least encourages us to believe that the military is aware of the problem. But what about the rest of the world? What about nuclear missle silos in the former Soviet Union, with warheads pointed toward the Western world? How about SCUD missles filled with Anthrax in the Middle East? Financial issues seem to pale in comparison to these threats. Is there any reason to feel secure about these systems?

-- Michael McCarthy (mixahl@hotmail.com), February 24, 1998


As far as the US missile systems are concerned, the only possible failure mechanism would be that they would be unable to be armed or launched. Not a good idea, but not a doomsday scenario. The missiles have been upgraded many times since the 1960's, including a full replacement of the Launch Control Center (LCC) computer systems. This update, called REACT, was only fielded a few years ago so it MUST be y2k compliant.

The other guys... I haven't a clue.

-- bud davis (bud_davis@sprynet.com), February 24, 1998.

While I don't know a lot about defense, I would question that the only failure on a missile would be to not arm or launch. Sorry, buy other systems can fail by turning themselves on so why not missiles? Also just because a system was installed only a few years ago, you cannot assume that it is Y2k compliant. There is still code being written TODAY that is not compliant. Hopefully, someone more knowledgeable about defense systems will jump in here.

-- Rebecca Kutcher (kutcher@pionet.net), February 26, 1998.

It is verified that Y2K computer problems reach into the heart of the United States nuclear missile systems. Last week Cory Hamasaki and others reported to the c.s.year-2000 newsgroup that a speaker at a by-invitation-only Y2K meeting held in Washington DC and dedicated to embedded circuitry problems stated there are Y2K launch system problems in submarines. I would think that since there are Y2K problems which shut down missile launch systems on submarines, older launch systems in land based missile silos are likely also defective. The report was that the problem degrades the launch system so it can not fire. Other reports are that at one time the protocol was to fire missiles if the launch system was degraded. What is the current protocol and is it hardwired?

-- Allen Comstock (comstock@wild-life.com), March 01, 1998.

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