PICTURE: South Korean F-16s get JDAM capability

Singapore
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South Korea plans to equip its Lockheed Martin F-16C/D fighters with Boeing's GBU-31 Joint Direct Attack Munition.

"We recently developed a software that enables JDAM to be fired and improves combat capabilities of the F-16," says the South Korean air force.

"We have performed three firing tests, confirming that our self-developed software works with JDAM, and can hit targets precisely," says Maj Kim Se-hun of the air force.

The JDAM guidance kit converts "dumb" bombs into smart weapons by incorporating a new tail with global positioning/inertial navigation system guidance, and adds body strakes for stability and lift.

south korean lockheed martin f-16c/d
 

At some point South Korea is likely to upgrade its fleet of F-16C/Ds. The majority of these are Block 52 models, with the remainder being Block 32s. Flightglobal's MiliCAS database says the nation has 118 F-16Cs and 51 two-seater F-16Ds.

The common configuration improvement programme for the F-16 would provide a new mission computer, says an industry source. It would also introduce a common datalink with US aircraft, as well as Seoul's own fleet of Boeing F-15Ks. The US manufacturer has so far delivered 46 of the latter type, with another on order.