HC Deb 24 February 1999 vol 326 c302W
Mr. Menzies Campbell

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) when the(a) 1,000 pound and (b) 540-pound free-fall bombs will receive an upgrade package; how much his Department expects to spend in 1999–2000 on the upgrading of the stock of free-fall conventional bombs; and if he will make a statement on the Staff Target Air/Sea 1248 programme; [72198]

(2) what is his assessment of the accuracy of the Air Force and Navy's 540-pound and 1,000-pound bombs (a) currently and (b) after the proposed upgrade package. [72197]

Mr. Doug Henderson

The UK's current 5401b and 10001b bombs are ballistic weapons deliverable either guided or unguided. The accuracy with which they can be delivered depends on many variables including the aiming system used by the delivery aircraft, the speed, dive angle, height and range from the target at release from the aircraft and type of attack profile. The weather conditions may also be a significant factor.

The possibility of an upgrade programme is currently being examined. No decisions have, however, yet been taken.