Indian Air Force Tests the CBU-105 Anti-Tank Smart Bomb

Source

While tanks rule the territorial battlefield, it is air power that decides the outcome.

In the hotly contested-arena between land forces and airpower, the Indian Air Force now has another ace up its sleeve. This is the new anti-tank CBU-105 sensor-fused smart bomb. This weapon carries a 450kg explosive payload and was deployed along with Jaguar deep-strike aircraft in a test at Pokhran recently.

Source

The bomb successfully destroyed an entire dummy tank brigade target.

The CBU-105 — Source

The CBU-105 was initially developed as the CBU -97 (Cluster bomb unit) which was an unguided air-dropped munition. With the addition of fins, a guidance system, and a more streamlined body, the CBU-105 was born. This system was also called the Wind Corrected Munitions System. Patents for this weapon system date back to 1979 in the U.S. when in partnership with Textron Systems, the U.S. Air Force tested the initial versions of the CBU -97. The addition of the wind correction and smart guidance system made it a lethal, precise air-to-ground weapon system. The CBU-105’s 26 m (85 ft) CEP (circle of equal probability) of the WCMD is lower than some other PGMs (Precision Guided Munitions) in service with developed armed forces, but it is adequate for sub-munitions designed for suppression operations.

Source

Primarily intended for SEAD (Suppression of Enemy Air Defences) operations, the CBU-105 is being positioned as an effective anti-armor weapon, thanks to its wide area of coverage, all-weather utility and multiple-platform compatibility.

When a CBU-105 SFW (sensor-fused weapon) is deployed, its onboard navigation system uses GPS and sensors to navigate the bomb to a point closest to the target. When the sensors determine that the waypoint has been reached, a release door is opened. 10 BLU-108 sensor-fused sub-munitions or mini bombs free-fall towards the target. Let’s look at what happens to one of the 10 sub-munitions.

Drogue chutes slow down BLU-108 sub-munitions. Source

A parachute is installed on each sub-munition. The parachute opens when the designated target zone is reached. On reaching the designated altitude, the parachute is jettisoned with the help of small rockets. Along with correctly aligning the direction of motion, the rockets add an angular spin to each sub-munition. When the sub-munitions start rotating at a high speed, four hockey puck-shaped sensor-fused projectiles called skeet are propelled outwards due to centrifugal force.

The BLU-108 canister- Source
Size of the skeet in comparison to a ball-point pen- Source

An infrared sensor is mounted on each skeet. This locks on to a target and detonates the skeet. This explosion releases a molten copper penetrator, which is hot enough to penetrate armor. A wide shrapnel ring is also created because of the fragmentation of the skeet.

The copper penetrator — Source

In case the bomb has been dropped accidentally or if all targets have been eliminated, the skeet self-destructs on hitting the ground. This is to prevent the risk of unexploded munitions setting off explosions when friendly forces move in.

A CBU-105 in action — Source

When the Indian Air Force tested the weapon at Pokhran, they used SEPECAT Jaguar (a.k.a. Shamsher) strike aircraft. The aircraft was equipped with the Drain III navigation system and will now undergo the necessary upgrades to deploy the CBU-105 as a line weapon system.

Source

Technical Specifications — SFW (CBU-105)

  1. Total weight: 427 kg
  2. Overall length: 2300 mm
  3. Diameter: 400 mm
  4. Number of submunitions: 10 BLU-108 submunitions

Technical Specifications — BLU-108

  1. Total weight: 29 kg
  2. Length: 790 mm
  3. Diameter: 133 mm
  4. Number of submunitions: 4 Skeet submunitions

Technical Specifications — Skeet submunition

  1. Total weight: 3.4 kg
  2. Length: 95 mm
  3. Diameter: 127 mm
  4. Sensors: dual-band IR; LADAR

The CBU-105 has a greater than 99.6% reliability rate and has been purchased by many countries so far. One of the biggest orders was a 1300-bomb deal signed by Textron with Saudi Arabia in 2013. With the addition of the CBU-105, the IAF will have another potent weapon to field against an aggressor.

Jai Hind.

If you liked this story, here are some more —

  1. Brahmos missile successfully test-fired from Su-30 MKI
  2. Delhi to get a missile shield
  3. K. Natarajan appointed as DG of the Coast Guard
  4. DRDO tests new Surface-To-Air Missile
  5. Air Chief Marshal Bhadoria takes over as IAF Chief
  6. Astra Missile — All you need to know
  7. The S5 Ballistic Missile Nuclear Sub: 30 Key Facts
  8. The K-30 Hanhwa Air Defense Vehicle: 30 Key Facts
  9. Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft: 30 Key Facts
  10. Vikramaditya: The Cursed Carrier?

--

--

--

Automobile Engineer. Content Writer. Biker. Defense Enthusiast. Indian.

Love podcasts or audiobooks? Learn on the go with our new app.

Recommended from Medium

Rs31b being spent to establish IT Park in Karachi

Rs31b being spent to establish IT Park in Karachi

I was a teacher in the biggest lesson ever.

2021 in Review: Keeping Somalia Connected

Etihad Airways removes advert featuring Second Jewish Temple

Transparency in government? Sorry, but what happened to Honest John?

Things We Need To Grasp About The ‘India vs Pak’ Unrest

Emergency Dental Treatment in The Vale of Glamorgan #Urgent #Dentist #Appointment #The #Vale #of…

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
Adreesh Ghoshal

Adreesh Ghoshal

Automobile Engineer. Content Writer. Biker. Defense Enthusiast. Indian.

More from Medium

“Follow what you love and be willing to work hard.” — Mitzi Reaugh.

Mitzi Reaugh

Nepal: ‘We are much better prepared if there is another flood.’

Rikki Lee: More Than an Influencer

Learning the importance of time through life’s many obstacles