Raytheon has completed captive carry flight tests of its proposed solution for the US Air Force’s GBU-53/B small-diameter bomb II competition.

The tests demonstrated that the weapon’s form-factored tri-mode seeker and guidance receiver navigator are ready to enter the engineering and manufacturing development phase.

Engineers tested the weapon’s integration and guidance receiver navigator on a US Air Force F-15E as well as on a US Army UH-1 helicopter, which enabled the team to conduct more seeker data passes at a much lower cost on all required targets than would have been possible with a fast-moving jet aircraft.

Helicopter testing also allowed engineers to evaluate the GBU-53/B’s terminal approach to targets, a task not practical on fighter aircraft test platforms.