LONDON --- Raytheon Company and the U.S. Air Force have begun flight testing Small Diameter Bomb II in two additional modes: Coordinate Attack and Laser Illuminated Attack. SDB II features a highly advanced tri-mode seeker, enabling the weapon to use imaging infrared, millimeter wave and laser guidance to find targets on the battlefield.
In the Coordinate Attack mode, SDB II employs its on-board GPS system to attack high-value, fixed targets from close positions and from standoff ranges of greater than 40 miles. In the laser mode, SDB II utilizes its semi-active laser to track and eliminate laser-illuminated targets.
"The most recent round of SDB II flight testing verifies the weapon system's maturity. The program continues to progress toward the next phases of government confidence testing and operational testing," said Jim Sweetman, Raytheon's SDB II program director. "No other weapon system in the world employs an advanced tri-mode seeker to eliminate moving and stationary targets in the battlespace."
During this recent round of testing, Raytheon and the Air Force continued to refine SDB II's Normal Attack capability by executing flight tests against fixed and moving targets in various tactical scenarios. The Normal Attack mode uses the imaging infrared and millimeter wave seeker modes, and classifies targets as wheeled, tracked or boat.
Developmental testing will continue this summer with more Normal Attack, Coordinated Attack and Laser Illuminated Attack flight testing. The SDB II team will also conduct live fire tests of all up rounds.
SDB II employs Raytheon's unprecedented tri-mode seeker. The new seeker operates in three modes: millimeter-wave radar, uncooled imaging infrared and semi-active laser. These three modes enable the weapon to seek and destroy targets, even in adverse weather conditions from standoff ranges.
SDB II can strike targets from a range of more than 40 nautical miles, with a dynamic warhead that can destroy both soft and armored targets, while keeping collateral damage to a minimum through a small explosive footprint. The highly accurate SDB II has the flexibility to change targets after release through a secure datalink that passes in-flight updates to the weapon.
The U.S. Department of Defense has validated SDB II as a weapon that meets a critical warfighter need and has invested more than $700 million in the SDB II program.
Raytheon Company, with 2015 sales of $23 billion and 61,000 employees, is a technology and innovation leader specializing in defense, civil government and cybersecurity solutions. Raytheon is headquartered in Waltham, Mass.