February 10, 2011 09:00
South Korea's KF-16 fighter jets will be equipped with state-of-the-art GBU-31 Joint Direct Attack Munition precision-guided missiles. The JDAMs are fitted with GPS-aided inertial navigation system (INS) and wing kits to boost their accuracy and are capable of precision attacks at night and during harsh weather conditions.
At present, only 40 F-15K fighter jets are fitted with the missiles, but now all about 130 KF-16s will have them, making them more capable of countering North Korea's 170 mm howitzers and 240 mm multiple launch rocket systems that have been deployed on the border.
The Air Force said it developed software that connects the KF-16s with JDAM missiles and successfully carried out three tests. Pilot training was completed at the end of January. The GBU-31 JDAM missiles cost less than laser-guided missiles or other precision-guided munitions and can hit a target 9.6 m in diameter 27 km away in about 50 percent of cases.
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