US to build new B61 gravity bomb variant
The US DoD has announced its intentions to develop a modern variant of the B61 nuclear gravity bomb, labelled the B61-13. The decision is currently awaiting Congressional authorisation and appropriation.
The decision to forge ahead with the bomb came as a response to the ‘demands of a rapidly evolving security environments as described in the 2022 Nuclear Posture Review’, the DoD said.
The B61-13 would be produced by the US Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), which was closely engaged in the decision-making regarding the B61-33.
‘Today's announcement is reflective of a changing security environment and growing threats from potential adversaries,’ said Assistant Secretary of Defense for Space Policy John Plumb. ’The US has a responsibility to continue to assess and field the capabilities we need to credibly deter and, if necessary, respond to strategic attacks and assure our allies.’
The DoD said the new gravity bomb variant would be deliverable by modern aircraft and it would replace some of the B61-7s in the current nuclear stockpile but provide a similar yield.
Plumb added that while the B61-13 would provide the US with additional flexibility, it would not increase the overall number of weapons in its nuclear stockpile.
Shephard's Dubai Airshow 2023 coverage is sponsored by:
More from Dubai Airshow 2023 | View all news
Amid escalating tensions and technological advancements in drone warfare, Ukraine has reinforced its front lines with a delivery of 5,000 indigenous drones, paralleled by Iran's revelation of the new jet-powered Shahed-238.
The updated E-99M aircraft features an updated Erieye Radar and C2 systems, as well as new EW and Identification, friend or foe (IFF) systems.
A new agreement between Leonardo, the Italian government and Slovenia has marked the procurement of a second C-27J Spartan medium tactical transport aircraft for Slovenia, following an earlier deal signed in March 2022.
Boeing's progress in the MH-139A Grey Wolf helicopter programme have marked a milestone in the transition toward low-rate initial production, following the delivery of the final test aircraft to the US Air Force.
Boeing and augmented reality training specialist Red 6 have achieved notable progress in integrating advanced technology into training aircraft.