Learn about visible Ammunition of F-35 Lightning

F-35 has 6 hard points. Fighter Jet World is presenting here the detail of visible ammunition of F-35

1. AIM-9 sidewinder air to air infrared seeking short-range missiles.

2. You are seeing JDAM equipped (two windows on the bombs) Mark 84 General Purpose Bombs. Joint Direct Attack Ammunition or JDAM is a guidance kit that converts GP bombs into ‘smart’ ammunitions. JDAM equipped bombs are guided by an integrated inertial guidance system coupled to a GPS receiver giving them a range of 28 km.

GP bombs have a length to diameter ratio of 8:1 and a shape that results in minimum drag for the aircraft. They come in weight of 227 kg to 907 kg. If you enlarge the picture, you can see a smaller GP bomb possibly Mark 80 without JDAM kit behind the larger one.

The yellow textured stripe is a fire-retardent coating given to delay any potential accidental explosion.

3. In the middle of the fuselage you are seeing DAS (AN/AAQ-37). This Distributed Aperture System called ‘The Guardian’ is Directional Infrared Counter-measure System (DICM) sported by Joint Strike Fighter. It provides a 360 degree protection against a wide range of missile threats.

When Guardian detects a MANPADS, it tracks the incoming missile, then uses a laser beam to jam the missile’s guidance system, causing it to miss the aircraft. The entire automatic process occurs in 2 to 5 seconds only and needs no action on the part of pilot.

The Guardian System includes a multiband laser pointer/tracker and an ultraviolet missile warning sensor. The system is contained in a single pod that weighs 550 pounds and protrudes just 18 inches from the fuselage of the aircraft


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