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Developments at AWE

  • In 2002, AWE Aldermaston and Burghfield embarked on a massive building programme which will equip the UK government to design, test and build a new generation of nuclear warheads;
  • Since 2002, AWE have built the new "Orion" laser and the Gemini office complex; a massive supercomputer, essential to the design of new warheads, has been installed. A new High Explosives Fabrication Facility and several other buildings are under currently construction;
  • At AWE Burghfield work is underway on a new Warhead Assembly Facility and supporting builings;
  • Up to 1,500 new staff, including specialist warhead engineers, have been recruited;
  • These developments started well before parliament voted in March 2007 to replace the current Trident system.
  • Further planning applications for new buildings, including a new Uranium Enrichment Facility, are envisaged in the Site Development Strategy Plan;
  • For a detailed chronology of construction and related events, see;
  • When Parliament voted in March 2007 to replace the current Trident system, they only agreed to new submarines and missiles.They did not vote to replace the warheads.
  • Since 2007 the government have continued to claim that they have not yet made in a decision to replace the current warhead system, however continued building work at Aldermaston and other evidence suggests that this decision has already been made.