The US Air Force and National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) have conducted the first flight test of the B61-12 guided nuclear bomb launched from a Boeing F-15E.
The NNSA announced yesterday that the nuclear weapon couples a refurbished B61 nuclear bomb with a tail kit assembly produced by Boeing. The official photograph released by the NNSA shows a small object flying below the F-15E Strike eagle.
The weapon system will in the armory of US and NATO forces once it enters service in the early 2020s by consolidates the four existing variants (B61-3, -4, -7, and -10), with the exception of the B61-11 earth-penetrating weapon.
The 1 July developmental flight test is the first of three to be completed this calendar year. The weapon was inert, and it is unlikely that one will ever be tested live due to the restrictions of the Nuclear Test Ban Treaty.
The bomb will eventually be integrated with the F-35A Block 4 Joint Strike Fighter, F-16 Fighting Falcon, B-2A Spirit and PA-200 Tornado. Its introduction will not only consolidate the ageing nuclear stockpile, but inform a decision on whether to phase out the last US megaton-class nuclear bomb, the B83.
Orbital ATK has won a $25 million 5-year contract from the US Air Force to provide contractor logistics support for the Common Munitions Built-in-Test Reprogramming Equipment (CMBRE) system. Orbital ATK will provide technical and logistic support, depot-level repair, engineering services for obsolescence mitigation for Air Force and Foreign Military Sales (FMS) customers
Lockheed Martin announced tuesday that it will team with Bombardier and Raytheon to compete for the US Air Force's next generation Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System (JSTARS) replacement. The team aimed to develop a low-risk, affordable replacement for the E-8 Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System (JSTARS), a ground surveillance, battle management, as well as command and control aircraft that was built by Northrop Grumman
The US Air Force Secretary Deborah James said the US could deploy a squadron of F-22 Raptor fighter jets to Europe in response to the Russia aggression in the region, various media reported Monday. The Air Force has sent two theatre security packages made up of A-10s and F-15Cs to Europe
Raytheon has been selected by the US Air Force to bid for a $20.9 billion training Systems Acquisition III (TSA III) contract
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The US Air Force and National Nuclear Security Administration tested a B61-12 nuclear gravity bomb last month which has raised alarms of a throwback to the Manhattan project which started the age of nuclear annihilation. The $11 billion program which seeks to upgrade the B61-12 bombwith precision guidance ability has had commentators in Russia and China and some in the US claim that it will trigger another arms race, an euphemism to mean that the two nuclear powers may go on to develop a similar weapon, if not already having it in their arsenal
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