Military Review

Golden Horde smart ammunition getting ready for testing

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Guided bombs GBU-39 SDB. Golden Horde will make them more effective. Photo US Air Force


Currently, the US Air Force in the person of the Research Laboratory (AFRL) is engaged in several promising programs in the field of unmanned technology and guided weapons. One of them, Golden Horde ("Golden Horde"), is approaching the phase of flight tests. The first launches of “smart” weapons capable of interacting with each other will take place this year.

The latest news


Up-to-date data on the Golden Horde was published on July 13 by Defense News. Information was received from AFRL Head of Ammunition, Colonel Harry A. Haase, who oversees a promising program.

Colonel Haase recalled that within the framework of Golden Horde, two types of aviation means of destruction (ASP). For one of them, the CSDB-1 bomb, the hardware of the control systems has already been developed. Now work is underway on software that can solve special problems. In parallel with the development, software testing is carried out, which makes it possible to identify all possible shortcomings in time.

AFRL is already planning flight tests of promising TSAs. The CSDB-1 bomb will be tested on an F-16 fighter. These events will begin next fall or winter. In the summer of next year, they will launch tests of the second product from the Golden Horde. A “smart” false CMALD target will be tested with the B-52 long-range bomber.

The purpose of the first aerial bomb dumps will be to test the operation of communications and to work out general issues of interaction between ammunition and carriers. In addition, products will be checked in the simplest situations. For example, investigate the ability weapons Change your route as you get new entries. Due to these functions, bombs will be able to bypass enemy air defense zones and more effectively hit designated targets.


False targets ADM-160 MALD under wing B-52H. Photo Raytheon Corp.

In the near future, AFRL plans to place an order for the production of two types of experimental products for testing. There are no plans for serial production and deployment yet.

Less than two years are allotted to the study of the main design and application issues. In 2022, AFRL plans to begin a new phase of testing. This time, CSDB-1 and CMALD will be used together in a single operation. They have to work in a single "swarm", interact with each other and solve fairly complex combat missions.

Project components


The general management of the Golden Horde program is carried out by the Air Force Research Laboratory. Several commercial organizations were involved in the work. Some provided guided weapons of existing types, while others developed new control systems for them. The use of ready-made "platforms" and new management tools allows you to speed up and reduce the cost of work, as well as reduce some of the risks of a technical nature.

The CSDB-1 bomb project (Collaborative Small Diameter Bomb 1) is based on the Boeing GBU-39 SDB. New management hardware and software are being developed at Scientific Applications and Research Associates Inc. in conjunction with AFRL. The corresponding contract worth $ 100 million was signed last year.

The false target CMALD (Collaborative Miniature Air-Launched Decoy) is based on the Raytheon ADM-160 MALD project. In this project, Georgia Tech Applied Research is responsible for the control systems. The corporation received $ 85 million for the development and production of new funds.


Joint attack of the "Horde" bombs. AFRL Demo Shot / twitter.com/pat_host

Refining existing ammunition involves replacing controls and guidance. The Golden Horde project uses more powerful computing systems. Brand new software is also being developed. It should provide not only the withdrawal of TSA to the goal, but also respond to emerging challenges and threats. For this, a so-called autonomy module - a collection of algorithms and reactions to all expected cases.

As carriers of the Golden Horde are considered serial tactical and strategic aircraft, armed with the US Air Force. For the use of new weapons, they do not need serious modernization. Compatibility is provided by a corresponding software update on-board weapons control equipment. At the same time, for a carrier aircraft, the use of Golden Horde will not fundamentally differ from the use of other aircraft weapons.

Principles and Benefits


The main goal of the current project is to create promising aviation weapons that have elements of artificial intelligence and are able to work independently, as well as in a swarm or in a flock. It is expected that such TSA will be characterized by increased stability and survivability, as well as show benefits in efficiency.

The Golden Horde concept proposes to provide “smart” weapons with various data on the primary and secondary targets, the situation in the area of ​​its location, etc. At the same time, the bomb can receive additional data after dropping from the carrier, as well as transmit information to it and keep in touch with other ASP family.

After a reset, such a TSA should independently choose a route to the designated destination, taking into account the known data on the situation and bypassing the danger zones. Ammunition arriving at a given area will be able to exchange data and distribute identified targets to each other, increase the priority strike, etc. In addition, there is the possibility of retargeting the TSA after a reset or start.


TSA interaction processes in flight. AFRL Demo Shot / twitter.com/pat_host

In the future, as the Golden Horde develops and improves, fundamentally new opportunities are possible. Tactical and strategic aviation planes, as well as their ammunition, can be integrated into an integrated information and control network, each element of which can fulfill its functions and fully interact with others. In particular, any aircraft will be able to transmit target data to any bombs or missiles - and they will be able to distribute missions among themselves in the most efficient way.

One of several


It should be recalled that now, under the leadership of AFRL, several programs are being carried out aimed at creating and improving network technologies for the air force. Projects Skyborg, Loyal Wingman, etc. provide for the creation of unmanned aerial vehicles capable of operating in a "flock", including led by a manned aircraft. They will have to take on the most dangerous tasks, reducing risks to humans.

Such UAV programs provide for the use of developed on-board computing tools, elements of artificial intelligence, etc. The Golden Horde program is based on similar principles, but in this case we are talking about the use of promising technologies on weapons.

Promising programs should lead to a serious change in the face of the US Air Force and the emergence of new unusual opportunities. Existing aircraft will be able to work with promising UAVs and use AI with artificial intelligence along with them. However, so far these are just plans. All promising programs are in their early stages and are still far from introducing technology into practice.

The Golden Horde is already preparing for flight tests, which will begin in the fall and will take the next few years. The development of only two ammunition of this family will continue, at least until 2022-23. The ways in which the further development of the program will go and how soon finished products will go into service is not known.
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  1. Egoza
    Egoza 18 July 2020 07: 06 New
    -12
    "As you call the boat, so it will float" We would have thought how the Golden Horde ended in the old days. And Mongolia can also invoice "for copyright infringement" !!!
    1. Free wind
      Free wind 18 July 2020 08: 05 New
      19
      The horde lasted more than 300 years, I think that after 300 years another rocket will come up. Have a nice day love
  2. Avior
    Avior 18 July 2020 07: 37 New
    +7
    Ammunition control systems are becoming more and more complex.
    And this one is also complex
    1. NIKN
      NIKN 18 July 2020 10: 16 New
      +2
      Quote: Avior
      Ammunition control systems are becoming more and more complex.

      bombs will be able to bypass enemy air defense zones and more effectively hit designated targets.

      Of course, I understand the meaning, but here's how the air defense seems to be designed to protect targets, and not for concentration in areas separate from the target. Otherwise, the targets are separate, the air defense zones are separate ...
      1. 5-9
        5-9 18 July 2020 10: 45 New
        0
        I also asked this question ..
      2. voyaka uh
        voyaka uh 18 July 2020 10: 59 New
        +6
        Imagine: a city, outside the city - a target, an ammunition depot. The city is protected
        various air defense systems.
        A fighter-bomber dumps everything that he has in front of the air defense zone,
        turns around and flies away. And the ammunition of the Golden Horde themselves choose
        optimal routes to the target, taking into account the positions of air defense. For example, false goals
        they’ll send them to the positions of the pvoshniks, the anti-radars - after the false ones,
        and shock CDs will make zigzags and pass between positions.
        As a result: the target is hit, 70% of the missiles shot down, a couple of particularly interfering radars
        covered up. Everyone is happy.
        1. NIKN
          NIKN 18 July 2020 11: 12 New
          +2
          smile This is all clear. I'm talking about bypassing air defense zones. The air defense zone, as a rule, is designed to cover the target, but here it seems like, together with the air defense zone, to bypass the target. winked
          And in general, I understood the meaning, but the usual bypass of air defense zones is somehow not quite in the sense, it is more necessary overcoming, breakthrough air defense zones, and bypass, so it is the heads of the BR can, then yes.
          1. Grazdanin
            Grazdanin 18 July 2020 15: 48 New
            -1
            Quote: NIKNN
            I'm talking about bypassing air defense zones. The air defense zone is usually designed to cover the target, but here it’s kind of like

            In real conditions, making an equally effective defense of an object by 360 degrees is extremely expensive, and such objects can physically have a limited number. There simply will not be enough short-range and short-range air defense systems. They make air defense zones to cover the main sectors of them and need to go around. The list of air defense systems of the Khmeimim base:
            ZRPK short-range "Shell-C1";
            Short-range air defense missile system "Osa-AKM";
            S-125 "Pechora-2M";
            Medium-range air defense systems "Buk-M2E";
            Long-range air defense missile systems S-200VE Vega;
            S-400 Triumph.
            How many such bases can you make? Well, 2, 3, 4 equipment is not enough. And even then this defense is overcome, there are no cases in history when air defense has completely defended someone. For clarity, the picture, just imagine how many air defense weapons of the near and small zone are needed, in the picture a sector of several degrees.
        2. 5-9
          5-9 18 July 2020 12: 08 New
          -3
          Fly to the city from such a side, so that the warehouse is in front, and not for not guessing?
          And of course I understand that American physics is more important than the laws of nature, but tell me how, her mother bomb, without an engine, will make these impressive zigzags?
          Horde is not a CD ...
          1. tima_ga
            tima_ga 18 July 2020 19: 27 New
            0
            Indeed, all this is good at presentations and against an enemy with weak air defense. And against equal, a bunch of factors come out. Considering that it’s planning, it’s unlikely that the carrier will not be able to enter the range of long-range air defense systems, and there is also air interception, the operation of electronic warfare, etc. ... But one thing is clear: guided weapons with AI elements are the future and who will start first work in this area, he will be ahead.
          2. forpost
            forpost 19 July 2020 15: 59 New
            0
            Quote: 5-9
            how the mother bomb, without an engine, will make these impressive zigzugs?

            Here is the intrigue
    2. RealPilot
      RealPilot 9 September 2020 22: 41 New
      -1
      The complexity of ammunition guidance systems leads to their high cost.
      In the American case, this is just cosmic money if applied in large quantities. fellow

      So, one of the main challenges for the US Air Force is the rapid depletion of high-precision ammunition stocks. This has already happened with the Europeans in the bombing of Libya. They asked the states to send in replenishment as stocks ran out.
      This is Libya. And Russia or China, with their territories and air defense?


      And what's next? Use good old free-fall bombs? But then the benefits of stealth disappear, for example. And cunning target designation devices are losing their relevance.
      And it turns out that the holiday of impunity is quickly ending.
  3. Rostislav
    Rostislav 18 July 2020 08: 00 New
    -3
    The title immediately shows against whom they are preparing to apply.
    1. voyaka uh
      voyaka uh 18 July 2020 11: 02 New
      0
      The Golden Horde attacked: first China, then Central Asia, then Russia,
      then Eastern Europe.
      1. Grazdanin
        Grazdanin 18 July 2020 11: 58 New
        -1
        Not certainly in that way. The Mongol Empire conquered almost all of Eurasia. The Golden Horde is a state formed after the collapse of the Mongol Empire.
        1. Rostislav
          Rostislav 18 July 2020 19: 10 New
          -1
          With such distances and that speed of movement, how long did it take for the decrees to reach the outskirts?
          Looking at such a map, you begin to understand deeper the old saying: "God is high, the king is far away ..."
          1. Grazdanin
            Grazdanin 18 July 2020 19: 17 New
            +1
            There was no state in our understanding then. There were separate "kingdoms" where the Khan / Tsar's proteges ruled. It was necessary to send a bash to the center, to expose an army when necessary, to protect its territory from bandits, to maintain some order.
            If the local boyar didn’t do the right thing, a punitive detachment was sent for operational detention and escorting to the place of trial. Doesn’t resemble anything?))
      2. 5-9
        5-9 18 July 2020 12: 11 New
        0
        In fact, the Golden Horde arose after the collapse of the unified empire of Genghis Khan, well, or at first it was an integral part together with the Blue and White and parts that were not called the Horde at all ... Well, it was just losing and shrinking ..
  4. Mountain shooter
    Mountain shooter 18 July 2020 09: 27 New
    -4
    The more complex and smarter the ammunition, the more expensive it is. I do not believe that such complex ammunition does not have communication lines, at least with each other. And with an aircraft carrier. These will be the "windows" of vulnerability for electronic warfare systems. The Americans' bet on super-duper weapons is somewhat reminiscent of the rate of the demoniac on the superwaffe at the end of WWII.
    1. voyaka uh
      voyaka uh 18 July 2020 11: 08 New
      +7
      Everyone puts on what he is strong:
      Russia - for nuclear weapons, for hypersonic missiles.
      America - On Conventional Precision Weapons Based on Advanced
      data exchange systems.
      1. Mountain shooter
        Mountain shooter 18 July 2020 11: 15 New
        -5
        Quote: voyaka uh
        America - On Conventional Precision Weapons Based on Advanced
        data exchange systems.

        But this weapon is used against an enemy who recently mastered a Kalashnikov assault rifle ...
        How will such a weapon work against an adversary who will jam communications on all ranges, satellites, use ammunition with explosive electromagnetic ammunition? Is the power in these ammunition, or is it another Zumvolt - insanely expensive and wildly unnecessary?
        1. voyaka uh
          voyaka uh 18 July 2020 11: 19 New
          +8
          Any new weapon is first tested in simple situations, then in more
          difficult environment and so on.
          The first drones were first used in the absence of counteraction,
          then - with a weak reaction. Now - in any environment.
          1. 5-9
            5-9 18 July 2020 12: 14 New
            0
            Can an example of the use of drones in the conditions of echeloned air defense and complex jamming conditions?
            I ask you not to offer an example of Chinese disposable drones with 5 RGDs attached to them during an attack on Khimki (formally it will correspond)
            1. Morrrow
              Morrrow 19 July 2020 12: 21 New
              -1
              Genocide of Paezirei in Syria and Libya
              1. 5-9
                5-9 19 July 2020 16: 23 New
                0
                And there and there there was no echeloned air defense and electronic warfare. It's just a lie about Syria, and in Libya the number of UAVs shot down is 10 times higher than the number of Shells ...
                Not ashamed to write such nonsense al Ukrainian?
    2. Grazdanin
      Grazdanin 18 July 2020 12: 20 New
      +2
      Quote: Mountain Shooter
      I do not believe that such complex ammunition does not have communication lines, at least with each other. And with an aircraft carrier. These will be the "windows" of vulnerability for electronic warfare systems

      Communication channels used for exchange between the specified devices cannot be detected or "jammed". A narrow, high-frequency, short signal simply won't get past the receiver. REDs will not be able to transmit interference at a given frequency far.
      1. Mountain shooter
        Mountain shooter 18 July 2020 12: 27 New
        -1
        Quote: Grazdanin
        detect or "muffle". A narrow, high-frequency, short signal simply won't get past the receiver. REPs will not be able to transmit interference In this frequency, far

        The transmission range does not depend on the frequency (within the line of sight) ... EW covers both the allocated frequencies and "stripes" ... And also the direction finding of information exchange signals makes it possible to timely detect and neutralize the threat. wassat
        1. Grazdanin
          Grazdanin 18 July 2020 12: 31 New
          +1
          Quote: Mountain Shooter
          The transmission range does not depend on the frequency (within the line of sight)

          Hmm ... This is done at school, you don't even have to study to be a radio engineer.
          In open space (as long as the range is not limited by visibility), doubling the frequency increases the transmitter power requirements by 2 times. With the same transmitter power, increasing the frequency by 4 times reduces the range by 2 times.
          1. Mountain shooter
            Mountain shooter 18 July 2020 12: 35 New
            0
            Quote: Grazdanin
            Hmm ... This is done at school, you don't even have to study to be a radio engineer.
            In open space (as long as the range is not limited by visibility), doubling the frequency increases the transmitter power requirements by 2 times. With the same transmitter power, increasing the frequency by 4 times reduces the range by 2 times.

            Right at school. Only exactly the opposite! Otherwise, it was not worth climbing into high frequencies tongue not in terms of civil communications, nor in military. We carry VHF radios in our pockets, but HF?
            1. Mountain shooter
              Mountain shooter 18 July 2020 12: 57 New
              0
              With an increase in the frequency of oscillations of charged particles 2 times, the radiated energy increases 16 times! Therefore, oscillations of high frequencies are excited in the antennas of radio stations: from tens of thousands to tens of millions of hertz
            2. Grazdanin
              Grazdanin 18 July 2020 13: 05 New
              0
              Don't drown yourself any further. These are not even 1 year university questions.
              VHF is less susceptible to interference, has better penetrating ability than HF. Under ideal conditions, it is transmitted to several hundred kilometers, in ordinary life A few dozens.
              HF has a longer wavelength, which makes it possible to transmit a signal to thousand kilometers. But the penetrating power is weak, there is a lot of interference, and it is highly dependent on the weather.
              1. Mountain shooter
                Mountain shooter 18 July 2020 13: 10 New
                0
                Quote: Grazdanin
                HF has a longer wavelength, which makes it possible to transmit a signal over thousands of kilometers. But the penetrating power is weak, there is a lot of interference, and it is highly dependent on the weather.

                We are not talking about the propagation of radio waves, in which interference, and reflection from the Heaviside layer, and absorption of the medium interfere. And about the power density of the radiation, which should "crush" the enemy transceivers. And the bandwidth of the "flock" communication must be large, since the amount of information is large.
                1. Grazdanin
                  Grazdanin 18 July 2020 13: 31 New
                  0
                  Quote: Mountain Shooter
                  And the bandwidth of the "flock" communication must be large, since the amount of information is large.
                  The amount of data transmitted is affected by the channel width and the frequency of radio waves. The higher the frequency, the higher the amount of data, the channel width also directly affects. When the exchange goes between several devices, the channel width plays a small role, it is important in a city when there are millions of devices. For example for a cellular station and a telephone. When a dozen missiles or an aircraft with guided UAVs are flying, the channel width is not needed so much.
                  High-frequency, narrow-beam signals (not to be confused with channel width) cannot be intercepted or drowned out.
            3. Grazdanin
              Grazdanin 18 July 2020 13: 09 New
              0
              Google it for a minute. The higher the frequency, the shorter the waves, the shorter their transmission distance.
              1. Xenofont
                Xenofont 18 July 2020 20: 29 New
                +1
                Yes, you state everything correctly. GSM cellular communications at 900Mhz, 3G-1800, 4G-2700 and the range of reliable reception drops by 20 percent every time.
                1. Grazdanin
                  Grazdanin 18 July 2020 20: 37 New
                  -1
                  I studied for 5 years as a radio engineer)) really studied so-so and it was a long time ago.
                  Naturally, in reality, everything is more complicated, many variables must be taken into account. The same VHF radio stations mainly operate at the lower frequencies of the range.
  5. 5-9
    5-9 18 July 2020 09: 59 New
    -1
    In the USA, they learned about the flocks of Granites :)
    But does a flying energy bomb have enough to bypass air defense? From what height should you throw all this for a decent range? Again, what kind of air defense were they going to bypass and what targets and where, taking into account the range of the flying bonba? Electronic warfare channels will not drown out? And what is the price of this magnificence going to be?
    If it was an AGM158 missile, then the concept is clear (strike on an important target in depth), but not very
  6. barin
    barin 18 July 2020 10: 11 New
    14
    How to protect yourself from such ammunition? Probably layered air defense + electronic warfare + mock-ups and target simulators. In short, it is quite expensive and difficult.
    1. 5-9
      5-9 18 July 2020 10: 51 New
      0
      The loss of media ... For at least some throwing distance UAB height should be decent.
    2. Genry
      Genry 18 July 2020 12: 15 New
      -1
      Quote: barin
      How to protect yourself from such ammunition? Probably layered air defense + electronic warfare + mock-ups and target simulators. In short, it is quite expensive and difficult.

      "Derivation-Air Defense" will come in handy.
    3. Grazdanin
      Grazdanin 18 July 2020 15: 54 New
      -1
      Quote: barin
      How to protect yourself from such ammunition?

      Shoot down carriers, destroy airfields and aircraft carriers. Air defense will help from several missiles, it will not save from a massive strike, electronic warfare is useless for such devices and is itself an extremely vulnerable target.
  7. Operator
    Operator 18 July 2020 11: 10 New
    -8
    Well, the golden in the full sense of the African-American Horde will fly to the goal, and there they are already waiting for the penny Russian "nails" of the existing in a huge number of "Pantsir" air defense systems. Therefore, the Pentagon is on the right track, spending resources on all sorts of whistles and fakes bully

    Hypersonic weapons are our everything.
  8. Antifreeze
    Antifreeze 18 July 2020 13: 58 New
    12
    I wonder if this ammo is expensive compared to the previous ones?
  9. Koval Sergey
    Koval Sergey 19 July 2020 13: 11 New
    +8
    We are also developing something similar.
  10. KOLORADO73
    KOLORADO73 19 July 2020 17: 47 New
    -1
    Golden Horde? Are the Tatars making this rocket?
  11. barin
    barin 20 July 2020 13: 24 New
    12
    Unfortunately, our similar ammunition is currently losing in range.
  12. Old26
    Old26 20 July 2020 13: 28 New
    0
    Quote: Egoza
    "As you call the boat, so it will float" We would have thought how the Golden Horde ended in the old days. And Mongolia can also invoice "for copyright infringement" !!!

    Well, Peresvet also died in a single combat with Chelubey. So, then you need to change the name of our laser complex. And then, after all, he will enter the battle, something can and will do, and he himself will order a long life?