US Air Force approves use of StormBreaker smart weapons

The U.S. Air Force’s StormBreaker® smart weapon has a unique tri-mode seeker that allow pilots to hit moving land-based or maritime targets in adverse weather or low visibility.

The US Air Force’s (USAF) Air Combat Command (ACC) has approved the fielding of StormBreaker smart weapon on F-15E aircraft.

Developed by Raytheon Missiles & Defense, the precision weapon is designed to provide the user with an edge in combat.

Raytheon Missiles & Defense Air Power business vice-president Paul Ferraro said: “StormBreaker delivers an unprecedented capability to pilots in the field.

“The weapon gives airmen a significant advantage, the ability to strike maritime or land-based manoeuvring targets at range in adverse weather.”

This approval will allow the F-15E squadrons to be equipped with StormBreaker, as well as for mission deployment.

Raytheon Missiles & Defense StormBreaker programme director Cristy Stagg said: “The weapon has proven itself in many complex test scenarios, against a variety of targets in extreme environmental conditions, and is now ready to fly.

“With its multimode seeker and datalink, StormBreaker will make adverse weather irrelevant.”

The small size of the StormBreaker will allow a smaller number of aircraft to tackle the same number of targets compared to larger weapons with multiple jets.

Additionally, it can fly over 40 miles to hit mobile targets, which reduces the time that aircrews are in harm’s way.

Later this year, the weapon will be fielded on the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet for the US Navy, following which it will be integrated for fielding on the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter.

In 2018, Raytheon was a $96.1m contract by the USAF for the production of Miniature Air-Launched Decoys (MALD) missiles.

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