Established on May 27, 2014, the Air Force Nuclear Deterrence Operations Medal is designed to honor Airmen who have provided support to nuclear deterrence operations.
To be eligible, personnel must have served 120 days consecutively or 179 days non-consecutively while performing duties including but not limited to the inspection of nuclear sites; nuclear-related transportation, safety, or maintenance; facility upkeep; disposal; weapons loading; program management; nuclear research or development; aircrew support; or control and communication.
Qualifying Air Force personnel dating back to December 27, 1991 are eligible for the award.
The medal is bronze and features a star at the center of a nuclear symbol; the symbol is encircled by a laurel wreath. The reverse of the medal is encircled by an inscription reading “NUCLEAR DETERRENCE OPERATIONS SERVICE” and features the U.S. Air Force wing emblem with an inscription reading “U.S. AIR FORCE.” The ribbon is dark blue with thin vertical stripes of red, green, and yellow alternating with dark blue and proceeding toward the exterior.
Additional awards are denoted by oak leaf clusters. Awardees who carry out service supporting ICBM and dispatch operations may also receive a golden “N” device.