Boeing has been awarded a $280 million integration and engineering support contract for the Small Diameter Bomb I glide bomb, the U.S. Department of Defense said in a release.
The indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract “provides for SDB weapon integration on selected weapon platforms and support of the fielded weapon system,” the Thursday, September 26 release said.
Work is expected to be completed by September 2024.
In late May, Boeing was awarded a $35 million contract modification for Small Diameter Bomb I integration, sustainment and support for foreign military sales customers, bringing the total cumulative face value to $100 million. An April 15 notice said the contract provided for integration, sustainment and support of the Small Diameter Bomb I on “various Foreign Military Sales aircraft platforms.”
Precision stand-off strike capability
The GBU-39 Small Diameter Bomb is a 250-pound precision-guided glide bomb with a stand-off range of more than 40 nautical miles (74 km). It uses a GPS-aided inertial navigation system to attack fixed or stationary targets.
The system is designed to enable aircraft to carry a higher number of smaller, more accurate bombs. Many U.S. Air Force aircraft can carry a pack of four GBU-39 SDBs in place of a single 2,000-pound bomb. The GBU-39 was launched from F-22s to strike Taliban drug factories in Afghanistan in November 2017.
The GBU-39B/B Laser Small Diameter Bomb variant integrates the JDAM’s semi-active laser, enabling the bomb to hit targets moving at up to 80 km/h (50 mph). It has been fielded by the U.S. Special Operations Command since 2014, and in December 2017, Boeing was awarded a $10.5 million contract to produce Laser Small Diameter Bombs for the U.S. Air Force.
A third variant, Raytheon’s GBU-53/B Small Diameter Bomb II, has been rebranded “StormBreaker.” It adds a tri-mode seeker that enables radar and infrared homing, as well as semi-active laser guidance, and reportedly features target recognition.