019 – Air-to-Surface Weapons

Today’s combat aviator enjoys a wide variety of munitions from which to choose when attacking surface targets. From free fall general purpose bombs, to laser- and GPS-guided weapons, to glide and forward firing rockets, missiles, and guns—the extensive arsenal is full of complex, yet highly effective ordnance.

Commander Colin “Farva” Price
Commander Colin “Farva” Price

Join US Navy Commander Colin “Farva” Price as we discuss how pilots choose which weapons to use against which targets and how ‘collateral damage’ concerns are addressed in recent conflicts. We step through the various weapons employed by the F/A-18 series of aircraft such as Mk 80 and BLU-series warheads, LGBs, JDAM, JSOW, SLAM ER, HARM, Maverick, rockets, and more. We also describe practice munitions used in training before wrapping up with a peek at future weapons coming down the pipeline. And check out the Super Hornet with 10 JDAM!

During the listener question segment, find out what happens when a navy pilot gets fired, what we know about the Top Gun sequel filming, and how military aircraft paint schemes have changed since Vietnam and the tactical significance of aircraft finishes.

Episode bumper music by Jaime Lopez, photograph by Vincent Aiello.