Destroying a target with aircraft-delivered weapons is much easier said than done. A bomb’s impact point is greatly influenced by two sets of forces. Altitude, airspeed, dive angle, and separation effects caused by airflow around the airplane are the first set of forces affecting the bomb. As the bomb falls, its flight path is further shaped by the second set of forces: gravity, aerodynamic drag, wind, air density, and even the minor changes caused by Coriolis effect. The magnitude of the error caused by the second set of factors is directly proportional to the distance the bomb travels through the air and the bomb’s slant range. The trick to precision bomb is to arrive to a release point with unique set of release conditions matched to the desired impact point. However, the wind velocity, air temperature, and density can be measured at the release point, but they do not remain constant throughout the bomb’s fall. This is the reason why there is need of precision guidance kit to improve the accuracy of the bomb. Self-guided bomb by TASL Recently, MoD has also approved AoN for Long Range Guided Bombs &, Range Augmentation Kit for conventional bombs for Indian Air Force to improve the precision weapons delivery capability. As per reports from Financial Times, TASL has independently designed self-guided bombs. TASL has also secured order and is set to deliver the self-guided bombs to Indian Air Force by March 2023. However, the details about the guided bomb and aircraft for which its being procured is not reported. DRDO LRGB DRDO has also developed Long Range Bomb (LRB). It is an inertial guided bombs with GPS or NavIC satellite guidance which is an upgrade from existing laser-guided weapons having limitations, such as range of delivery from the target and susceptibility to environmental conditions. The inertial guidance system is an electronic system that continuously monitors the position, velocity and acceleration of a vehicle, usually a submarine, missile, or aircraft, and provides navigational data or control without the need for communicating with a base station. When it is installed in a bomb, the system can help navigate the bomb to its designated target by continuously providing updated navigation inputs. Such systems have the unique ability to perform without depending on external inputs such as ground-based navigation aids as well as GPS. It does not have an engine of its own but runs on the inertia imparted to it by the mother aircraft. Variants: Gaurav & Gautham There are at present two variants of the DRDO Glide Bomb which includes Gaurav and Gautham. Gaurav is the winged version of glide bomb having range of upto 100KM and weighs upto 1000KG. There are three versions of this bomb depending upon the warhead it carries which includes 1) pre-Fragmented warhead 2) Penetration cum Blast warhead and 3) Tandem- Pre-Fragmented – warhead. Gautham is the non-winged version having a range of 30 km and in future its range will be enhanced to 100 km. It weighs 550KG. There are two versions of this bomb: 1) Gautam Pre-Fragmented warhead 2) Gautam Penetration cum Blast warhead. The LRGBs have Circular Error probability of less than 15m. The Guarav LRGB will be manufactured by Adani Defence which was also showcased during ‘AMMO INDIA 2022’.
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