by Matt Bradwell
Patuxent River, Md. (UPI) Dec 1, 2014
The United Kingdom's Royal Air Force has completed the first in-flight test launches of the Raytheon Paveway IV precision-guided bomb from a Eurofighter Typhoon and F-35B fighter jet.
According to Raytheon, "The Paveway family of laser guided bombs has revolutionized tactical air-to-ground warfare by converting 'dumb' bombs into precision guided munitions."
"Newer versions of Paveway include GPS/INS guidance capabilities. This innovation combines the accuracy and flexibility of traditional laser-guided weapons with the all-weather capability of GPS guidance, resulting in a weapon that decreases the required sortie count and weapon inventory while simultaneously increasing the mission success rate."
"[...] Standard Typhoons can carry up to six Paveway IV weapons, which can be released simultaneously against multiple targets," simplified British Aerospace test pilot Steve Formoso to IHS Jane's 360.
The Eurofighter's successful trial run occurred at the Cape Wrath Training Center in Scotland, while the F-35B was tested at the United States Navy's Patuxent River Naval Air Station in Maryland.
"These latest trials ... help us to move confidently into the next phase of weapons testing," F-35 lead test pilot Pete Wilson told AirForce-Technology.com.
"This is another landmark moment for the Typhoon Force, and highlights the aircraft's potent swing-role capability," echoed British Wing Commander Mike Sutton from across the Atlantic.
"The swing-role capability of the Typhoon ensures that we are well equipped to respond to the challenges of contingent operations across the globe, while also maintaining the security of UK skies through the delivery of Quick Reaction Alert, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year."
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