Project Pave Way 2 GBU-8 HOBOS Prototype Photos?

overscan (PaulMM)

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27 December 2005
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Mike Hankins posted some photos of what is described as photos of the early Paveway LGB on Twitter (attached).

They actually appear to be photos of a GBU-8 HOBOS prototype.

The Autonetics / North American (later Rockwell) GBU-8 came from the Pave Way program, initially this was for laser guided bombs but Pave Way 2 (Electro-Optical) and Pave Way 3 (IR) projects were added later. These photos are presumably of the prototype Pave Way 2 EO bomb by Autonetics.

I discovered that Autonetics did design an LGB prototype which competed with Texas Instruments' BOLT-117 in 1967, however this looked quite different.


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Can't help on the EO bomb. I concur that it's related to HOBOS, but otherwise I've got nothing.

But I'm curious about Pave Way 2 and 3. Clearly they're not the same as the later Paveway II and III, which are refined versions of the LGB. I've never heard of EO or IR relatives. Were they similar in shape/design to the laser Paveway?
Pave Way was a generic USAF program to develop guided bombs in general.

Pave Way 1 was laser guided, and won by TI over Autonetics, leading to the Paveway series of LGBs

Pave Way 2 was EO / TV guided, developed by Autonetics using the AGM-64 Hornet seeker as a basis (no idea if there were other contenders) and led to the GBU-8 HOBOS. It was fielded, but was a lot more expensive than laser guidance, no more accurate, and also could be troublesome in poor weather conditions, so it was a lot less successful.

Pave Way 3 was IR guided, but canned at an early stage.
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Paul C. Gillespie, Weapons of Choice - The Development of Precision Guided Munitions (University of Alabama Press, 2006)
Peter deLeon, The Laser Guided Bomb - Case History of a Development (RAND, 1974)
Kenneth P. Worrall, Chasing the Silver Bullet : U.S. Air Force weapons Development from Vietnam to Desert Storm (Smithsonian Books, 2003)
Aviation Week
That was very interesting. I knew about HOBOS, but I'd never seen it associated with a PAVE project. Thank you.


glide Pave Storm with HOBOS's kit! o_O



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Holy crap they did have a guided cluster bomb program!
I always thought that would have been useful in an era with 20m CEPs and revetted enemy installations.
Is there any indication of what the abortive Pave Way 3 IR guided bomb might have been?
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