A Block V Tomahawk, the latest version of the US Navy’s most lethal cruise missile was test-fired from guided-missile destroyer USS Chafee on December 9.
“Vinson strike group guided-missile destroyer USS Chafee (DDG 90) made history being 1st to launch and operationally test a Block V Tomahawk. Block V is the weapon’s newest variant with upgrades enhancing navigation performance and robust, reliable communications,” the USS Carl Winson Group said in a Tweet.
The location and target information has not been provided.
A Raytheon Missiles update about the Tomahawk Block V said:
Beginning in 2020, the U.S. Navy will recertify and modernize the missile, extending its service life by 15 years, and resulting in the new Tomahawk Block V series:
Block V: A modernized Tactical Tomahawk (TACTOM) with upgraded navigation and communication
Block Va: Block V that can strike moving targets at sea
Block Vb: Block V, with a joint multi-effects warhead that can hit more diverse land targets
Starting with the Block IV the Tactical Tomahawk has a data link that allows it to switch targets while in flight. It can loiter for hours and change course instantly on command
U.S. and allied militaries have flight-tested the GPS-enabled Tomahawk 550 times and used it in combat more than 2,300 times. Its most recent use came in 2018, when U.S. Navy warships and submarines launched 66 Tomahawk missiles at Syrian facilities.