Source : IgMp Bureau
|An US Navy P-8A Maritime Patrol Aircraft dropping standard Mk54 torpedo|
The US Navy’s P-8A Maritime Patrol Aircraft has added a new weapon known as High Altitude Anti-Submarine Warfare Weapon Capability HAAWC which transforms the air-dropped Mark 54 lightweight anti-submarine Torpedoes into long-range standoff weapons and the HAAWC will soon be available to existing operators of P8 aircraft that includes the Indian Navy.
When the HAAWC kit equipped Mark 54 lightweight torpedo is released the weapon glides to a designated target area using GPS assisted guidance system after which the torpedo is dropped into the water using a parachute and it then travels to hit the intended target.
Importantly, anti-submarine torpedoes thrown from the air must typically be discharged relatively close to the target and at very low altitudes, frequently barely 100 feet above the water. However, this also means the aircraft will fly dangerously close to the enemy’s missile defense systems. This is where the HAAWC comes in.
|Illustration of Boeing HAAWC|
By enabling Navy P-8A crews to use Mk 54 torpedoes at longer ranges, the HAAWC lessens their potential exposure to any nearby enemy air defenses.
This became especially important as
The P-8 and other Anti Submarine Warfare (ASW) aircraft can pursue sub-surface targets with HAAWC’s help without having to worry about running afoul of any anti-air systems that may be stationed close to the submarine or the area where the sub operates.
This kit allows a P-8 to launch an assault from up to 30,000 feet without descending slowly over the ocean. Due to the inclusion of the additional kit, the P-8 no longer needs to expose itself by flying slow and low, a risky position for any combat aircraft.
By releasing torpedoes at enemy submarines with this HAAWC package, the P-8 will also be able to serve as a sort of arsenal ship for other anti-submarine assets, such as ships, helicopters, and even friendly submarines.
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