GBU-27 Paveway III


GBU-27 Paveway III
GBU-27 xxl.jpg
GBU-27 Paveway III
TypeLaser guided bomb
Place of originUnited States
Production history
Unit costUS $ 55,600[1]
Mass900 kg (2,000 lb)
Length4.2 m (14 ft)
Diameter711 mm (28.0 in)

Effective firing range19 km (12 mi)

The GBU-27 Paveway III (Guided Bomb Unit) is a laser-guided bomb with bunker buster capabilities, it is a GBU-24 Paveway III (fitted on the warhead of the BLU-109 bomb body) that has been redesigned to be used by the F-117A Nighthawk stealth ground attack aircraft. The pilots flying over Iraq during the First Gulf War nicknamed it the "Hammer",[2] for its considerable destructive power and blast radius.[2]

Combat history

The GBU-27 was used in Operation Desert Storm. It was the weapon used in the February 13, 1991 attack on the Amiriyah shelter, which resulted in the deaths of more than 400 Iraqi civilians. It was also used in a series of strikes on the Muthanna State Enterprise site during February 1991.[3]

During the 1999 NATO attack on FR Yugoslavia, two of these bombs were used to destroy the Avala Tower, a symbol of Belgrade.

During the 2003 invasion of Iraq, the US Air Force dropped 98 EGBU-27s on Iraqi targets.[4]

The first foreign sale of the GBU-27 was the acquisition by Israel of 500 units equipped with BLU-109 penetrating warheads, authorized in September 2004. (Raas and Long 2006) Delivery of such precision guided weaponry was accelerated at the request of Israel in July 2006, though the exact munition were not specified. Israeli Defense Forces officials state that other precision-guided munitions have been used to attack Hezbollah facilities in the 2006 Israel-Lebanon conflict.[5] However, the bunker busting technology in the GBU-27 could be directed, according to Israeli military sources, at Iran or possibly Syria.[6]

As of 2011 the UK's RAF have also ordered the GBU-27 for use in Libya.[7]

See also


  1. ^ "Guided Bomb Unit-24 (GBU-24) Paveway III". Archived from the original on 2019-03-28. Retrieved 2019-07-28.
  2. ^ a b Don, Holloway (March 1996). "STEALTH SECRETS OF THE F-117 NIGHTHAWK: Its development was kept under wraps for 14 years, but by 1991, the F-117 nighthawk had become a household word". Aviation History. Harrisburg, Pennsylvania: Cowles Magazines. ISSN 1076-8858.
  3. ^ William Winkenwerder, Jr., MD, Special Assistant to the Under Secretary of Defense, "The Gulf War Air Campaign - Possible Chemical Warfare Agent Release at Al Muthanna, February 8, 1991 Archived March 11, 2007, at the Wayback Machine", November 15, 2001.
  4. ^ "Royal Air Force Dropped More Than 400 Enhanced Paveway Bombs During OIF". Defense Daily. 8 July 2003. Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 8 August 2015 – via HighBeam Research.
  5. ^ "NY Times". Archived from the original on 2018-06-15. Retrieved 2019-07-28.
  6. ^ "Anton La Guardia - Israel challenges Iran's nuclear ambitions, September 22, 2004". Archived from the original on July 26, 2019. Retrieved July 28, 2019.
  7. ^ Archived 2018-01-01 at the Wayback Machine.
  • Whitney Raas and Austin Long, Osirak Redux? Assessing Israeli Capabilities to Destroy Iranian Nuclear Facilities, MIT Security Studies Program Working Paper, April 2006.

External links

  • FAS
  • Raytheon (Texas Instruments) Paveway III - Designation Systems