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Tom Clancy Drool-Fest

October 13th, 2013 - 8:21 am

AC-130_firing_night
Cool:

U.S. SOCOM (Special Operations Command) is building a prototype of the new AC-130J Ghostrider gunship. This model will use more smart bombs and missiles, have fewer cannons, and have more and better sensors. There will still be a 105mm cannon on board and wings modified to carry two 130 kg (285 pound) Small Diameter Bombs (SDB). The latest version, the SDB II (GBU 40) is basically an unpowered missile which can glide long distances. This makes the SDB even more compact and capable. The small wings allow the SDB to glide up to 70-80 kilometers (from high altitude). SDB also has a hard front end that can punch through nearly three meters (eight feet) of rock or concrete and a warhead that does less damage than the usual dumb bomb (explosives in a metal casing). The SDB II has an encrypted data link that enables the SDB to hit moving targets. This communications capability enables the SDB movement to be controlled via the air force’s airborne Internet (Link 16). The prototype is expected to fly for the first time by the end of 2013. On the Ghostrider the SDB provides the kind of support only a bomber aircraft could supply previously.

The U.S. Air Force is buying 16 C-130J transports, for $100 million each for conversion into AC-130J gunships. Equipping the new gunships will nearly double the price, and the first one won’t enter service until 2017.

If there’s a lesson here, it’s that even our slowest, fattest plane can kill you quite dead.

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All Comments   (9)
All Comments   (9)
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TWO SDB's ?? Weak. Big, slow, unstealthy target ? Now, hang 24 SDBs on an F-16, and now you're talking. And since it's a Standoff Weapon, load 32 on a standard rotary launcher, stick two of them in the bomb-bay of a B-52, and hang another 24 on the externals. 88 beats 2 for stand-off capability. . .
48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
The C-130 is too low and slow to survive.

The real reason that there wasn't any air support at Benghazi was the warehouses full of shoulder launched SA-4 AA missiles that went missing with the fall of Lybia, and those will knock out F-18's. C-130's don't have a chance against them. And that's today.

In the future, aircraft will face kamikaze drones being guided to the target on smartphone screens, and controlled by tilt sensors in the smartphone.

The second generation drone will get confirmation of EM signature (what it 'looks like' in different spectra) and will home in by passive sensing alone, with zero EM emissions.

Height and speed will soon be the only way to survive. That, or just sending more cheap stuff up than can be knocked down.

Puff the magic dragon was a great idea in Viet Nam, but today's bad guys shop on Amazon.
48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
This is why America is a superpower. We look at a cargo plane and think "I bet I could put artillery on that." We also look at a gatling gun the size of a VW Beetle and figure out how to make it fly.
48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
$200mil, and it's just a slow platform? What?
48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
Awesomeness! I'm a fan in particular of the SDB's. They're game changers.

http://www.ausairpower.net/APA-SDB.html
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
The answer is not less cannons, it is more cannons.

Clearly we need a number of AC-17s. More 155s. More GAU-8s. AND EFFING LASERS. Big ones.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
On sharks. Don't forget the sharks.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
"Yum, yum!", said the bear...
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
"That's not a moon..."
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
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