Skip to comments.US Plans to Arm B-52 With ‘Mother of All Bombs’
Posted on 06/26/2018 1:50:07 PM PDT by Eddie01
The US Air Force is seeking to modify its B-52 Stratofortress heavy bombers to accommodate carrying and delivering the so-called mother of all bombs, a creative nickname given to the Massive Ordnance Air Blast (MOAB) weapon, according to a new report.
The bomb made waves last April when a US military plane dropped a GBU-43/B MOAB on an allegedly Daesh-run terrorist camp in Afghanistan. The bomb is regarded as the most powerful non-nuclear bomb in the US weapons arsenal. April 13, 2017, marked the first employment of the bomb in combat.
The Air Force is seeking information from industry regarding "sources that may possess the expertise, capabilities and experience to meet the qualification requirement" to deploy the bombs onto the B-52, one of the oldest pieces of military equipment still used by the US, according to a Request For Information released June 21.
When the weapon was dropped in 2017, air crews simply released the bomb from a cradle within a C-130 cargo plane, letting gravity and Global Positioning System-satellite guidance do the rest of the work.
The Stratofortress planes have "limitations" when it comes to carrying heavy weapons beneath its wings, according to the RFI, which require modifications to carry munitions heavier than 5,000 pounds. B-52s typically carry most of their weapons in an internal weapons bay, but the bay doors are only 28 feet long and the MOAB is 30 feet long.
"When [the current external weapons pylon] was introduced, there wasn't a requirement nor did anyone foresee a need to carry weapons heavier than 5,000 lb," the document noted.
US Air Force Working on Baby Mother of All Bombs The new external weapons pylon will need to carry "multiple weapons in the 5,000 to 20,000 lb weight class," the military procurement document says. Each MOAB clocks in right around 20,000 pounds.
As reported by Sputnik News, in the realm of non-nuclear weapons, Russia's "Father of All Bombs," a thermobaric explosive, has a power of 88,000 pounds of TNT, roughly four times the destructive capability of MOAB. MOAB is also a thermobaric weapon, or fuel air explosive, which uses dispersed fuel to create a volatile air mixture that generates a colossal percussive air blast upon detonation.
B-52s can also carry nuclear weapons, which, ironically enough, are much smaller than the MOAB yet thousands of times more powerful. The B53 thermonuclear bomb, which the B-52 could carry two of, only weighed around 8,850 lbs each, according to the Nuclear Weapons Databook.
“B-52s can also carry nuclear weapons, which, ironically enough, are much smaller than the MOAB yet thousands of times more powerful. “
From what I read, the last B-52 was delivered in 1962!!!
Astounding that they haven’t found a good replacement.
If nothing else they should recognize that, like the F-16, 18, 15 and 10, it just was perfectly suited for its task and MAKE SOME MORE.
I am sure someone with more info and less opinion that I will stop by to explain why I am so very, very wrong.
I thought that the MOAB was used by President Bush. Gaddafi quickly fell into line. Is that not true?
B-52s will be used until 2040 (or so), at which point they will have been replaced by the B-21 Raider.
I watched one take off from Wurtsmith Air Force Base, Oscoda Mi. Airbase show in the 70’s.
*LOUD* even from the far airstrip.
Black smoke from all engines.
I will never forget it.
CORRECTION: “I AM NO PEACENIK HIPPIE,” or, in Italian, I’m-a-no-peacenik hippie...
I hope Iran and Erdogan are listening.
I had the pleasure of freeping Walter Reed 9/12/09.
I remember all the great pics from that era.
Thanks for the memory.
The WW2 British “Grand Slam” aka “Earthquake” bomb weight 22,000 pounds. The “Tall Boy” weighed 12,000 pounds. These two are the “grand parents” of the current group of the 20 - 22,000 pound MOAB’s.
Being stationed at Ellsworth, I got to see the BUFFs taking off and landing. What a site to see.
I did some work down in Fort Worth, TX - probably 1987 or so. The B-52s would be lined up heading back to the airport in the evening - a seemingly endless line of them.
I visited a buddy that was on a refueling plane, he would be a week on for 24-hour readiness, then a week off. As we drove by the base and a few B-52s sitting on the tarmac I asked “So now are those loaded with nukes and ready to go?”
“I can neither confirm or deny that statement. However, those armed guards DO have live rounds in their rifles.”
I would think it would be easier to take a few feet off the length of the bomb that to re-engineer the wings on a B-52.
An intended pun, right?
(a colossal percussive air blast = sound wave)
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