Ukraine Claims First Kill with Ground Launched Small Diameter Bomb

GLSDB air-launched bomb was announced for delivery to Ukraine as part of a U.S. aid package in February 2023
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  • 11:00 AM, March 26, 2024
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Ukraine Claims First Kill with Ground Launched Small Diameter Bomb
Damage to the Russian UAV crew's house in Kherson region. March 2024 @via Telegram

Ukraine has claimed a direct hit on a Russian UAV launching center using the Ground Launched Small Diameter Bomb (GLSDB) made by Boeing-Saab.

The GLSDB is an air-launched bomb launched like an artillery projectile and was announced for delivery to Ukraine as part of a U.S. aid package in February 2023. It was reportedly delivered in December.

The Ukrainian military struck the location of Russian drone operators in the south using high-precision bombs with a GLSDB rocket engine.

Avideo depicting the destruction of the enemy position on the left bank of the Kherson region was published by the Aeronauts aerial reconnaissance team. Ukrainian drone footage reveals damage to a house that reportedly housed an enemy UAV crew, formerly ZALA. A powerful explosion nearly obliterated the large house, suggesting potential casualties if occupants were present.

The magnitude of the explosion suggests the use of a corrected aerial bomb, possibly a GLSDB launched from a ground installation, or aerial bombs such as an American JDAM or a French AASM 250 HAMMER from Ukrainian Air Force aircraft.

OSINT researchers discovered that a house with occupants was destroyed in the village of Chernyanka, Kakhovsky district, Kherson region. It is also reported that the day before, the house where this crew lived was hit by a GLSDB. In the accompanying video, occupants are seen moving by minibus from one private house to another in the settlement before a projectile strikes the building housing the Russian drone operators, resulting in significant destruction.

Analysts from the Telegram channel "KyberBoroshno" determined that this house was also affected in the village of Chernyanka on the left bank of the temporarily occupied Kherson Region. The detection and destruction of buildings used by operators of Russian UAVs was achieved through the joint efforts of the 32nd OABr, the 140th separate reconnaissance battalion of the Marine Corps, and the 73rd maritime center of the SSO.


Ukraine Claims First Kill with Ground Launched Small Diameter Bomb

Ground-Launched Small Diameter Bomb

The Ground-Launched Small Diameter Bomb (GLSDB) originated from Boeing's GBU-39 guided air bombs, introduced in 2006. These bombs, part of the Small Diameter Bomb (SDB) program, gained popularity due to their precision and low visibility, making them difficult to counter with anti-aircraft missiles. They weigh 130 kg and feature wings for extended range, with an initial circular deviation of 5-8 m. Initially air-launched, Boeing conceived the GLSDB in 2011 to enable ground launch capabilities, partnering with Saab in 2014.

The GLSDB combines a gliding aerial bomb with a solid rocket booster, achieving speeds of 900-1200 m/s and distances up to 150 km. It boasts 360-degree coverage, maneuvering capabilities, and precision targeting, with trials showcasing its accuracy, even hitting sea targets from 130 km away. Norwegian company Nammo's solid-fuel rocket engine enhanced its range. Nordic Shelter developed a container launcher, enhancing its deployability.

Ukraine's adoption of GLSDBs in HIMARS/M270 launch containers signifies increased strategic mobility. The GLSDB's mobility and interception-resistant features could pose challenges to Russian air defense systems such as Tor and Pantsir-S1 systems.

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