Stocking up on Paveway IV

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The MoD has let another contract to Raytheon for more Paveway IV Precision Guided Bombs

The Secretary of State for Defence (the Authority) acting through the International Guns, Missiles and Rockets Project Team of Defence Equipment and Support proposes to award a 12 month contract, to Raytheon Systems Ltd for the manufacture of a number of Paveway IV bombs. The contract value is 40 000 000 GBP

Stock replenishment or getting ready?

UK Royal Air Force Typhoon capability has taken another step forward with a live weapon testing sortie carried out by Britain's oldest frontline squadron. Two Paveway IV precision guided bombs were dropped sucessfully, with two direct hits.
UK Royal Air Force Typhoon capability has taken another step forward with a live weapon testing sortie carried out by Britain’s oldest frontline squadron. Two Paveway IV precision guided bombs were dropped sucessfully, with two direct hits.

 

 

READ MORE ABOUT UK COMPLEX WEAPONS

UK Complex (Guided) Weapons – Reference

 

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Beno
Beno

That’s ALOT of bombs.

Possibly more that stock refill yes !

Tubby
Tubby

According the Guardian a Paveway IV cost £30k, so a manufacturing contract for £40 million (assuming it does not include any support, intergration or R&D costs) is sufficient to purchase 1,333 bombs. Be interesting to know how many bombs it is actually for (my guess is that is around 1,200 bombs which does seem a quite large number)

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/sep/30/bombing-isis-futile-air-strikes-iraq

ForcesReviewUK
ForcesReviewUK

Consider F-25B can only initially drop Paveway IV, stocking up?

ForcesReviewUK
ForcesReviewUK

I mean F-35B

Engineer Tom
Engineer Tom

1200 isn’t that many, considering it now seems to be our primary bomb. In the last year we have dropped 200 in operations, I am assuming they have a use by date as well so there might need to be some turn over, and then there is training. So this is probably an increase in our stockpiles, if it is an annual order, but it could also cover multiple years in which case we have probably used considerably more and it is just replenishment.

CG1
CG1

While this is great news, I think we need something smaller and cheaper (with the ability to carry more per aircraft) for enemies whose primary weapon is a Toyota pickup. Modular 20mm Gatling for A400M or deploy some Hawks or Tucanos with cannon in low-threat areas?

Dangerous Dave

@CG1

Modular 20mm Gatling for A400M or deploy some Hawks or Tucanos with cannon in low-threat areas?

If the threat level is *that* low, why not just deploy MQ-9 Reapers?

JohnHartley
JohnHartley

Going off at a tangent & maybe into fantasy bombs territory, but Britain has lacked a tactical nuke since WE177 was retired. The 100kt Trident warhead is supposed to make a “clean” 10kt warhead, if you remove the fusion booster, so how about 20-30 x 10kt tactical nukes inside a Paveway IV?

CG1
CG1

@ Dangerous Dave

No gun on the Reapers so it can only deploy expensive munitions. Perhaps loading up a few 20lb practice bombs would give a cheap piece of ordnance that could take out a soft target like a pickup?

Hannay
Hannay

@CG1

What happens to your Tucano’s strafing run when the enemy has manpads? There are plenty floating around.

CG1
CG1

Fit some EW and decoys – Typhoons aren’t immune to MANPADS either. Tucanos may be slower but they are manoeuvrable and have a lower IR and radar profile. Apaches manage to survive in this sort of environment.

Lord Jim
Lord Jim

I wonder why the UK has shown little or no interest in the use of guidance packages for unguided rockets. Given that this is a simple bolt on seeker head and a few very minor alterations, surely this is an ideal weapon for the Reapers and even a good middle ground option for the Apaches. Could it be that we are too focused on uses for the lightweight missile currently being integrated on to the Wildcat (cannot remember its name)

Fahre
Fahre

Those Toyota pickups are usually outfitted with heavy machine guns and there’s usually more than one pickup trucks moving about.

cg1
cg1

WW2 stats indicate that AA fire against a Spitfire-type aircraft by smaller weapons (ie not specific AA guns) is unlikely to bring an aircraft down although the risk would certainly be higher. I like the post above suggesting guided rockets as a solution and the gunship option still has merit as a 20mm gives more distance. I wonder whether a 20mm/guided rocket package could be fitted to something smaller than a C-130? The C-130 gives a lot of range and rough-field capability, an Osprey gives you V/STOL, a Cessna Caravan gives you numbers – all available off-the-shelf-ish assuming we don’t ‘anglicise it’ too much.

ArmChairCivvy
ArmChairCivvy

There’s two takes on it (Jordanian and Italian):

http://aviationweek.com/awin-only/atk-delivers-cn235-gunship-jordan

JamesF

Didn’t we give the Saudis a load of Paveway IV for operations in Yemen? That might explain the need for top up.

ArmChairCivvy
ArmChairCivvy

Talking about loadsa Toyotas to be taken out by one Reaper:

Flight Tests Approach for Raytheon UAV Munition “…US defence/aerospace firm Raytheon has developed a new weapon intended for use by UAVs, along with small conventionally-manned light aircraft and combat helicopters.

Raytheon’s STM (Small Tactical Munition) phase II has been tested in the laboratory and, before the year is out, will be flight-tested. An air-launched weapon, the SMT phase II is the smallest munition produced by Raytheon and it’s a gravity-dropped bomb that’s less than two feet in length and 5.4 kilograms in weight.

Raytheon UAV Munition
Compared to the STM phase 1, this new Raytheon UAV munition is smaller and incorporates a retractable wing and fin design, making it compatible with standard US military weapons launching equipment.

It also boasts a unique warhead design produced by Nammo-Talley and a hi-tech semi-active laser seeker, allowing the Small Tactical Munition to carry out precision strikes on rapidly-moving non-static targets.”

DavidNiven
DavidNiven

‘RAF Bombs Diverted to Saudis for Yemen Strikes’
http://www.defensenews.com/story/breaking-news/2015/07/16/britain-diverts-bombs-destined-for-raf-to-help-saudi-fight-in-yemen/30236031/

‘LONDON — Britain is transferring Paveway IV precision guided bombs originally earmarked for the Royal Air Force to Saudi Arabia to enable the Gulf state to build stocks of the weapon being used against targets in Yemen and Syria, sources here said.

The Ministry of Defence has swapped delivery positions on the production line at Raytheon UK to ensure the Saudi Royal Air Force has weapon stocks to continue strike missions with the highly accurate 500-pound bomb.’

TrT
TrT

A Gunship may be a cheaper way of splatting pickups, but it might not, the spooky is a mighty expensive beast and the Osprey is far from being cheap too.

There was a PMC in the early days of Iraq using tiny scout helicopters with a .50cal as a “ghetto gunship”.
Should we accept that sort of risk though?

Dropping a £30,000 bomb on a pickup might sound overkill, but a new Pickup runs to £20k, a new HMG runs to £10k and a 3/4/5 man crew arent free either, ISIS arent buying new, and stole most of what they had, but its a they can run out, or at least suffer military restraints as their stocks dwindle.

Sure, a semi guided 70mm rocket would be cheaper, but there would probably be harvestable spare parts and survivors, and we’d have to integrate the rocket.

Sadly we use significantly more hellfires than paveways, but that may be a deliberate choice if we are running downs the hellfire stocks to replace with brimstone?

The Other Chris

TD has some articles covering our unguided rocket options.

We’re unlikely to go with APKWS or DAGR as MBDA/Kongsberg have a development in progress for CVR7.

Following MOD releases it looks like we are progressing LMM/FASGW(L)/Martlet initially and would probably develop that system further with additional seeker modes and warhead natures.

http://www.thinkdefence.co.uk/2013/03/a-ground-role-for-hellfire-crv7-and-lmm/

http://www.thinkdefence.co.uk/2012/02/lightweight-multirole-missile/

http://www.thinkdefence.co.uk/2013/01/sea-protector-with-2-75-rocket/

EDIT: Helping Poland develop Watchkeeper both technically and financially allows us to keep a path for FFLMM if we wanted it, however our policy so far is to keep armed RPAS limited to Reaper (requires a longer ranged weapon system) for the time being.

Bledlow
Bledlow

Weelllll . . . . . since if the US had stuck to its official aircraft designation system it should be F-24 or F-25, & given how different it is from F-18A-D the F-18E should really be F-24, I think that F-25 is perfectly acceptable. It’s what it should have been called, if the USA hadn’t ignored its designation system.

The Other Chris

Their designation system is fairly fast and loose and takes into account schemes such as the X Plane system, which already had an X-24.

Even if the strict fighter schema was followed, the F-24 mission and number has already been assigned to the Banshee.

Chris
Chris

Bledlow – the US naming conventions are way beyond my logic. Is an M4 a tank or a carbine? Is an M16 a rifle or a half-track? Is an M30 a mortar or a tracked carrier or a machine gun?

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