Extremely rare close-up photo of the FAB-500 bomb before it was used

One of the most dangerous Russian weapons since the beginning of 2023 used against the Ukrainian armed forces and their positions is the FAB-500 aerial bomb. It’s not very often that quality photos arrive from the front to reveal details about this bomb.

Extremely rare close-up photo of the FAB-500 bomb before it was used
Photo credit: Telegram

The photo below was taken in the last 24 hours. This is an extremely rare close-up photo of the FAB-500 model M62. The photo was taken after sunset: a period during which the Russian air force begins to plan and execute its military air raids.

Also, the photo clearly shows the most important part of the bomb: the universal planning and correction modules [UMPC]. Shooting these modules is also a rare moment. According to Russian war observers, this photo is only the second such close-up of the FAB-500 since the start of the war.

What do we see in the picture?

First, it is clearly seen that the bomb is attached to one of the outer pylons of a Russian fighter jet. The plane is blue in color. Although there is no concrete proof, it may be a Su-34 Fullback fighter bomber. The Russian air and space forces most often use this combat aircraft to drop this type of bomb.

Su-34 may have 'anomalously dropped' a FAB-500M62 bomb on Belgorod
Photo by VitalyKuzmin

As already mentioned, the bomb’s UMPCs are clearly visible. Do you know how important they are? Thanks to them, the accuracy of bomb delivery is achieved. These modules use advanced technology to calculate the bomb’s trajectory and make real-time corrections to ensure it hits the intended target with precision.

Pilots benefit from UMPC capabilities. Through them, pilots can more effectively hit targets that are difficult to reach or heavily fortified. UMPCs allow greater flexibility in target selection. Pilots can adjust their approach in flight based on changing circumstances, such as the movement of enemy forces or unexpected obstacles.

About FAB-500 bomb

Introducing the FAB-500, a significant component of the Russian Air Force and Navy’s weaponry. Weighing 500 kg, it is a powerful bomb typically launched from bomber planes.

10 Su-35s attack with bombs hidden beyond the range of air defenses
Photo credit: Twitter

The FAB-500 measures 3.1 meters in length with a 0.45-meter diameter. Its steel structure includes a sharp nose and tail. It contains high explosives like TNT or Composition B, enclosed within a steel casing that provides support and ensures fragmentation during detonation.

The FAB-500’s fuzes can be varied based on the mission and target. It can use impact, time-delay, or proximity fuzes for different detonation methods. With a blast radius of 200 meters and penetration capability of 150 mm of reinforced concrete, the FAB-500 is versatile, and capable of destroying structures, vehicles, and ships.

FAB-500 detonation effect

The effects of detonating a FAB-500 bomb can be devastating. The explosion can create a shockwave that can travel for several miles, causing damage to buildings and infrastructure in the surrounding area. The blast can also cause fires, which can spread quickly and cause further damage.

FAB-500M62 bomb's blast wave ejects a Ukrainian all-terrain vehicle
Video screenshot

In addition to the physical damage caused by the explosion, the FAB-500 bomb can also have a significant psychological impact on the people in the surrounding area. The loud noise and bright flash of the explosion can cause fear and panic, and the destruction caused by the bomb can leave a lasting impression on those who witness it.

Both sides use aerial bombs

As the world turned its gaze towards the skies last year, whispers of a new type of aerial bomb began to surface. What once was an obscure rumour has now morphed into a tangible threat for Ukrainian defense, corroborated by photographs of unexploded ordnance and emerging intelligence reports. 

The moniker FAB-500M-62 has become a consistent feature in these discussions. This versatile piece of artillery, designed for deployment from any Russian fighter aircraft, not just the Su-35, has been given an upgrade. The Russians have cleverly adapted this bomb with guided wings, transforming it into a wing bomb – a tactic not unfamiliar to Western military who employ similar modifications to create smart aviation bombs. 

Extremely rare close-up photo of the FAB-500 bomb before it was used
Photo credit: Telegram

As BulgarianMilitary.com highlights, Ukraine isn’t entirely left in the dust in this high stakes game of aerial superiority. They too have received similar equipment, referred to as the JDAM bomb. Rumours have even circulated of Ukrainian forces deploying this bomb against the notorious military company Wagner in the Bakhmut area. 

Despite this, the Russian Air Force has not hesitated to flex its muscle in support of Wagner. Their weapon of choice? The FAB-500M-62 bomb. In what is currently the largest battle since the war’s commencement, evidence of its use is not scarce, with photographic proof and assertions from both sides of the conflict adding to the mounting tension.

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