The United States National Nuclear Security Administration released a statement on Friday announcing the successful testing of a nuclear gravity bomb in Nevada.
The announcement came right after the first ever combat-deployment of the Mother of All Bombs (GBU-43/B) in Afghanistan yesterday, which is reported to have vaporized 36 ISIS operatives, whilst leaving a big, beautiful crater.
The National Nuclear Security Administration quietly reported another premiere on Friday, i.e. the first successful operational test of a new-improved (as in modernized) guided B61-12 thermonuclear bomb in the Nevada desert.
The timing of these two apparently unrelated events seems to have been well thought by the US administration, as the international tensions with regard to North Korea’s rogue nuclear program are rising and the probability of a preemptive air strike on the crazy fat kid’s nuclear facilities is pretty high right now.
— Frank Klotz (@FrankKlotzNNSA) April 14, 2017
The press release from the US National Nuclear Security Administration describes how the non nuclear assembly test was deployed using an F16 fighter from Nellis Air Force Base and the scope of the mission was to evaluate, let me quote:
“both the weapon’s non-nuclear functions as well as the aircraft’s capability to deliver the weapon.”
Over the next 3 years, more tests will be conducted with the purpose of evaluating and qualifying the B61-12 gravity/guided nuke for service. Brigadier General Michael Lutton, US National Nuclear Security Administration’s principal deputy admin for military applications was quoted as saying about the Friday test:
“This demonstration of effective end-to-end system performance in a realistic ballistic flight environment marks another on-time achievement for the B61-12 Life Extension Program. The successful test provides critical qualification data to validate that the baseline design meets military requirements. It reflects the nation’s continued commitment to our national security and that of our allies and partners.”
The B61-12 nuclear bomb will replace/consolidate 4 B61 bomb variants in America’s nuclear paraphernalia while the first production unit is expected to be completed by 2020. Once the new B61-12 will be ready to roll, the US plans to deploy approximately 180 of these bad boys to 5 European countries: 20 in Germany, 20 in Belgium, 20 in Holland, 70 in Italy and, strangely enough, 50 in Erdogan’s Turkey.