[News Today] USA’s MOTHER OF ALL BOMBS – HOW POWERFUL IS IT ?: TOP 5 FACTS
USA has unleashed the MOAB, nick named Mother Of All Bombs. MOAB actually stands for Massive Ordnance Air Blast. The bomb is officially known as a GBU-43B.
The GBU-43B is the largest non-nuclear bomb ever deployed in combat.
It was designed by Albert L Weimorts Jr, in the Air Force Research Laboratory in 2003. The bomb was primarily developed as part of Iraq War’s ‘Shock and Awe’ strategy.
Let us go into the details.
MOAB is thermobaric weapon.
A thermobaric weapon utilizes oxygen from the surrounding air to generate an intense, high-temperature explosion. The blast wave typically produced by such a weapon is of a significantly longer duration and more powerful, than that produced by a conventional condensed explosive.
The MOAB is designed to hit targets such as surface facilities, tunnel entrances and troop concentrations. It is pushed out the rear of the aircraft it’s launched from and uses GPS to guide it. It is purposely slowed down by a parachute.
The bomb explodes in the air, creating air pressure that can make tunnels and other structures collapse. It can be used at the start of an offensive to soften up the enemy, weakening both its infrastructure and morale.
The bomb weights at about 21,500 pounds, which translates to about 9,500 kg. For comparison, 9500 kg is what 2 full-grown African Elephants weigh, roughly.
Since it is so large, it has to be dropped from rear of cargo plane.
It releases only 1/10 of 1% of the destruction that of the Hiroshima bomb did, and has no radiological effects. The blast yield is equivalent to 11 tons TNT. It is designed to explode 6 feet above ground and has enough power to obliterate anything in 1000 m radius.
For comparison with nukes of today, even the smallest of the US military’s atomic arsenal, the B-61 at its minimum configuration, has an explosive yield roughly 30 times that of the MOAB.
Does it have any equivalent?
Yes. In 2007, Russia tested a thermobaric weapon nicknamed the “Father of All Bombs”; the weapon is claimed to be 4 times as powerful as the MOAB.
According to experts, MOAB costs around $16 million per unit. So far the U.S. military has spent $314 million on the production of these. USA has 14 of these ready of use anytime.
The bomb has been in the arsenal for more than a decade. This also has larger political message directed towards Russia, China and North Korea that, USA is prepared to use force as and when required, and it is also ready to bring in the bigger weapons.
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