Lockheed bags deal to supply laser-guided bombs
The IAF plans to induct more than 100 bunker-buster LGBs for its Jaguar warplanes to destroy strongly fortified enemy targets. "We have emerged as the lowest bidders in the deal for supplying LGBs to the IAF. We have offered our Paveway II LGBs for the Jaguars and contract negotiations are on in this direction," Lockheed Martin India head Roger Rose told PTI here.
The IAF had issued a global Request for Proposal (RFP) for the purpose last year, and Lockheed Martin along with Raytheon and an Israeli missile manufacturer had taken part in the tender. With their capability to pierce hard surfaces, the LGBs can also be used to destroy enemy`s concrete runways and fortified locations.
LGBs are guided projectiles that use lasers to strike a designated target with greater accuracy than a gravity bomb and were used with high accuracy by the IAF against Pakistani Army posts during the Kargil war in 1999.
Around the same time, the US had supplied some Paveway bombs to India which could be launched from the Jaguar and Mirage 2000 planes for accurately striking enemy targets.
The earlier lot of the American bombs to the IAF was supplied by Raytheon.