UK’s Typhoon FGR4 destroyed the ISIS rocket launcher with Paveway IV

On April 21, a Daesh rocket launcher in Iraq was obliterated by two Eurofighter Typhoon fighter jets from the Royal Air Force [RAF]. This was reported by Britain’s Ministry of Defense. 

These two fighters were on a routine patrol day, their journey spanning across Iraq and Syria. Engaged in Operation Shader, they acted in harmony with the longstanding international coalition in the region. During the patrol, they detected a missile launch in the northwest of Iraq, targeting coalition forces.  

In response, as the British Ministry of Defense revealed, the fighters quickly located the Daesh missile system. One of the Typhoon FGR4s deployed a Paveway IV laser-guided bomb, resulting in a pinpointed strike. Consequently, the Daesh missile launch system was effectively destroyed, as confirmed by the ministry.

Operation Shader

Operation Shader symbolizes the United Kingdom’s efforts in the global fight against Daesh, commonly known as ISIS or ISIL. Initiated in 2014, this operation consists of airstrikes, surveillance activities, and reconnaissance missions from a military standpoint. The Royal Air Force [RAF] of the UK has surfaced as a central player in this operation, employing varied aircraft like Typhoon and Tornado jets, Reaper drones, and Voyager refueling planes. 

Under the banner of Operation Shader, the UK has also been involved in widespread humanitarian activities, providing aid to those deeply impacted by Daesh’s brutality. Recognized as one of the major contributors in response to crises in Syria and Iraq, the UK provides crucial supplies such as food, water, and shelter. Additionally, they provide medical aid to the countless individuals displaced due to the conflict.  

On the diplomatic front, Operation Shader signifies the UK’s collaborative efforts with international partners to cut off Daesh’s lifelines— income, combatants, and resources. These endeavors also involve opposition to the propaganda spread by Daesh and contribution towards stabilizing regions that have been liberated from Daesh’s control.

Iraqi military has uncovered a terrorist act prepared by IS
Photo credit: WSJ

Praise and criticism

U.S. experts have acknowledged the significant role of Operation Shader in combating Daesh. Esteemed for its effect in crippling Daesh’s infrastructure and the UK’s comprehensive strategy that integrates military intervention, humanitarian assistance, and diplomatic efforts, the operation has received widespread praise. 

Despite the general acclaim, Operation Shader has not escaped critique. Its transparency, or perceived lack thereof, particularly concerning civilian casualties, has been critiqued. Calls for the UK government to be more transparent about the results of its airstrikes are growing increasingly.

British armored Husky 4x4 TSVs, V8 engine, arrived in Ukraine
Photo credit: Wallpaper UP

What is a Paveway IV laser-guided bomb?

Raytheon, a renowned American defense company, is the developer behind the highly sophisticated Paveway IV laser-guided bomb. This isn’t a run-of-the-mill weapon; the Paveway IV is a dual-mode device, using either GPS/INS or a laser designator to home in on its target. 

The Paveway IV is highly valued for its remarkable accuracy and versatility. Unaffected by weather conditions or the time of day, it can engage both static and moving targets, hitting them with unerring precision. While the bomb weighs in at 500 pounds, its real strength lies in the technology it houses. Equipped with a height-of-burst sensor, the Paveway IV can detonate above the ground to maximize devastation. Additionally, its impact angle can be adjusted to either enhance its penetration power or blast effect. 

UK's Typhoon FGR4 destroyed the ISIS rocket launcher with Paveway IV
Photo credit: Blitz

The ‘late-arm’ function of the Paveway IV is an exceptional safety feature. This attribute ensures the bomb is armed only once it’s safely clear of the aircraft, reducing potential risk to the launch platform. Furthermore, the ‘man-in-the-loop’ attribute allows the operator to abort the mission post-launch if necessary. Lastly, the design of the Paveway IV aims to minimize collateral damage. Thanks to its precision and customizable warhead effects, it can eliminate targets without causing excessive harm to the nearby infrastructure or civilians.

The different Typhoon FGR4

Known for its unique attributes, the British variant of the Eurofighter Typhoon, the Eurofighter Typhoon FGR4, distinguishes itself from its kin. Its exceptional ability to concurrently conduct air-to-air and air-to-surface operations makes it stand out among other Typhoon models – a feature that isn’t ubiquitous among all variants. 

Spain lands F-18s and strains its Eurofighter Getafe factory
Photo credit: UK MoD Crown

This distinctive version is equipped with advanced avionics and weapons control systems like the game-changing MBDA Meteor air-to-air missile and the formidable Storm Shadow cruise missile. Tools of this sort expand the combat capabilities of the aircraft, ensuring it is battle-ready at all times. 

The FGR4 outshines others in its class due to the incorporation of the sophisticated CAPTOR-E AESA radar system. This cutting-edge radar system offers extended visual range and superior detection capabilities, bolstering the aircraft’s combat proficiency and situational awareness. Moreover, the FGR4 is designed with a reinforced defensive aids sub-system [DASS] that includes an extensive assortment of electronic countermeasures, strengthening the aircraft’s defenses against possible threats. 

A distinguishing feature of the FGR4 is its revolutionary fuel system, which caters to an elevated fuel capacity. This additional capacity imparts the British version with superior range and endurance, granting it extra flexibility in prolonged combat scenarios.

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