The US Air Force (USAF) has progressed the rolling out of an internal smart-weapons capability for its Boeing B-52H Stratofortress bomber fleet, with the first test drop of the Joint Attack Surface Standoff Missile (JASSM) in mid-August. The test, which was conducted by the 775th Test Squadron at Edwards Air Force Base (AFB) in California, saw three of the Lockheed Martin AGM-158 JASSM 2,000 lb stand-off cruise missiles dropped from a B-52H fitted with an upgraded Conventional Rotary Launcher (CRL) in its bomb-bay. This is the first of three test phases and was primarily focused on data collection associated with weapon clearance within the weapons bay and while rotating on the CRL. With a clean separation of the weapon in flight demonstrated, the next (interim) phase will include more of the same but with the addition of live weapons. The third phase will validate the CLR system”s full capability.
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