U.S. Air Force
U.S. Air Force
Earlier this month, the 337th Test and Evaluation Squadron, or TES, of the United States Air Force flew a B-1B bomber over the Gulf of Mexico to test the feasibility of using the swept wing aircraft to attack mobile sea targets.
According to a press release by Dyess Air Force Base in Texas, the squadron released six bombs as part of the test, including a laser-guided 500-pound GBU-54 and 500- and 2,000-pound joint direct attack munitions, or JDAMs.
Two photos captured during the test show a laser-guided GBU-10 bomb a moment before impact above its intended mobile target -- a speedboat at sea. A second photo shows the targeted speedboat exploding in an epic fashion as it takes a direct hit from the bomb seen in the previous photo.
The B-1B bomber, along with other bomber and fighter aircraft, were part of a maritime tactics development and evaluation, or TD&E, which was used to observe and better understand the capabilities of the bomber aircraft.
"This evaluation solidifies what our crew members have already known: 'We can strike surface targets,'" Lt. Col. Alejandro Gomez, 337th TES special projects officer, said in the press release.
The 337th squadron will use the data from the TD&E to develop new tactics, techniques and procedures to use in combat in the future.
Take a look at the dramatic photos captured before and after the bomb’s impact above.
Luke Villapaz is a Multimedia Producer at the International Business Times. He comes from a diverse media background working freelance in production and photography. Luke...