The 85th Test and Evaluation Squadron partnered with the Air Force Research Laboratory to equip the F-15E Strike Eagle with modified 2,000-pound GBU-31 Joint Direct Attack Munitions, August 26, 2021.

As the US military shifts to competing against major navies, the Air Force is working on a new ship-killing GPS-guided bomb.
Last month, F-15E fighters tested severals ways of using a modified 2,000-pound GBU-31 Joint Direct Attack Munition against targets on the water.
The test was designed to see whether pilots could drop the bombs on “different aim points to defeat maritime threats.”

See more stories on Insider’s business page.

As the military shifts its attention to competing against the world’s major navies, the Air Force is working on a new weapon: a ship-killing GPS-guided bomb.

On August 26, the Air Force Research Laboratory tested the ability to use modified 2,000-pound GBU-31 Joint Direct Attack Munitions, or JDAMs, on both stationary and moving targets on the water.

Three F-15E Strike Eagle fighters from the Eglin Air Force Base, Florida-based 85th Test and Evaluation Squadron, armed with dummy versions of the weapon, tried out a slew of different ways of using it, looking to prove it would work.

In a Friday interview, Col. Anthony Meeks, director of the Air Force Research Laboratory’s munitions directorate, said the test was designed to see whether pilots could drop the bombs on “different aim points to defeat maritime threats.”

Those “aim points” – the place where the crew wants the weapon to hit – could be at the top of the vessel, the waterline, or just below the surface of the water, Meeks said.

  Clayton Kershaw looks sharp as Dodgers hold off Reds

He declined to answer whether that meant the weapon could target specific portions of a ship such as its bridge, propulsion, fuel tanks or weapons, saying the exact capabilities of the weapon are classified.

The development of the weapon comes at a time when the military is largely moving away from the last two decades of fighting land-based militant groups in the Middle East and toward preparing for potential conflicts against major powers.

Some of those adversaries, such as China, have considerable naval forces.

The 85th Test and Evaluation Squadron partnered with the Air Force Research Laboratory to equip the F-15E Strike Eagle with modified 2,000-pound GBU-31 Joint Direct Attack Munitions, August 26, 2021.

The Air Force’s September 1 press release on the test said it was intended to be “a low-cost method of achieving torpedo-like seaworthy kills from the air.”

However, the JDAM is not self-powered, and its velocity comes from the speed of the aircraft releasing it and gravity, while fins steer it toward its target. That means a maritime variant wouldn’t streak under the surface of the water toward its target like a torpedo.

But among the modifications that have been made to this bomb are a redesigned nose plug, Meeks said. If the JDAM hits the water shortly before striking its target, that modified nose plug is intended to keep it from caroming off …read more

Source:: Business Insider

      

(Visited 2 times, 1 visits today)
News

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *