Raptor on the attack

raptornight.jpgSupersonic Raptor Drops First Guided Bomb on Military.com:

Since July, Raptor program have flown seven JDAM supersonic separation test missions under a variety of conditions. The aim is to prove the JDAM can safely separate from the aircraft.
But none of the previous tests used a JDAM guidance system.
“This was the first Raptor supersonic guided JDAM. The first one to guide to a target,” said Maj. John Teichert, the 411th Flight Test Squadron’s test pilot for the mission.
This release marks a dramatic increase in the stealth jets air-to-ground capability by clearing the first phase of the JDAM supersonic envelope, he said.
“The supersonic envelope allows the Raptor to release precision air-to-ground weapons at long stand-off ranges while performing its global strike mission,” Major Teichert said.
The supersonic JDAM capability allows the Raptor to deliver the weapon from a much greater distance than any other aircraft.

As long as it was intentional. Given the fact that the USAF just decided to remove the ‘A’ designator from the Raptor, Murdoc’s wondering if the bomb just fell off in mid-flight once the decision that the Raptor was no longer an ‘attack’ plane had been made.
Seriously, though, this is a good thing. While the Raptor is primarily an air superiority/dominance fighter, taking down radar installations and missile sites is a critical part of air dominance strategy and this fits in with the “kick in the doors” mentality that many use with respect to the Raptor. Just remember “Fighter…The Raptor is a fighter.”
The Raptor will begin testing the 250-pound Small Diameter Bomb (SDB) JDAM next year.
-cross-posted by Murdoc

  • paul

    I demand the purchase of over 400 of these.

  • pedestrian

    We have had F/A-18 with the “A” on it, probably the latest, if not Raptor. Meanwhile, we have not seen any stand alone (single role) “A” for a while. Will the A-10 be the last stand alone “A”, with A-12 Avenger II project never to surface again?

  • Dfens

    If you figure the F-22 weighs about 70,000 lbs at $125,000,000 per, and the B-2 weighs 336,500 lbs at $1,200,000,000 each, then the F-22 is twice the cost per pound. It took 20+ years to make operational vs. 12 for the B-2. It cost $45,000,000,000 to develop, vs. $29,000,000,000 for the B-2 (both in 2005 dollars). It carries 2,200 lbs of ordinance vs. 40,000 lbs in a B-2. and has a 1,000 mile combat radius (goes down to 500 miles in “super-cruise”) vs. 3,000 miles for the B-2.
    Boy, that’s progress for you! Remember how the F-22 was supposed to be next generation, low cost stealth? Not that nasty old high dollar stuff like the “super expensive” B-2. But you know the Air Force’s motto: Sure we could buy better, but we just can’t pay more!

  • kalroy

    PRESS RELEASE — Secretary of the Air Force, Office of Public Affairs
    Release No. 061205
    December 15,2005
    AIR FORCE DECLARES F-22A OPERATIONAL
    LANGLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Va. - The Air Forces most advanced weapon system is ready for combat, Air Force officials here announced Dec. 15.
    In reaching initial operational capability, the F-22A Raptor has been certified ready for employment. Declaring the transformational fighter IOC means the Raptors proven capabilities are now available for use in combat around the globe and are supported by a properly trained and equipped force. It also means the aircraft is qualified to perform homeland defense missions when required. In the words of Gen. Ronald E. Keys, Air Combat Command commander, If we go to war tomorrow, the Raptor will go with us.

  • doug ledel

    has 4 of these planes been shot down by chinas supposed lazer weapon?
    some guy is claiming this on the comments about our carriers in the yellow sea!!!
    And that they(russia and chins have stealth missiless that we cannot detect, and we will not know when they are lauched.
    any body that can answer this clown please do..
    he made the comment about 15 minutes ago.
    thanks