Here’s how a Typhoon multirole aircraft can hit two targets at the same time with a single targeting pod

The recent article about the Typhoon fighter jet performing first laser guided, self designating, simultaneous guided bomb drops sparked some debate.

Although other aircraft are known to have similar capabilities, some readers asked how a combat plane could hit two targets at same time with only a single laser designator of the Litening pod.

Typhoon LDP 1

Image credit: BAE Systems

I asked Andrea Kay, Senior Communications Advisor at BAE Systems, one of the companies of the Eurofighter consortium, to shed some light on the matter.

Andrea inquired his colleague Bob Smith, Engineering Director for Combat Air and here is Smith’s response:

“The Litening Pod is capable of illuminating/tracking multiple targets at any point in time, however, the implementation on the RAF Tranche 1 Aircraft was an austere implementation, limiting the system to a single target attack at any one time . So the answer to the specific question below is yes it does switch between targets at a high rate. The Laser does not need to change frequency for each target because the bomb is assigned to a target and just follows the Laser beam.”

About David Cenciotti
David Cenciotti is a journalist based in Rome, Italy. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviationist”, one of the world’s most famous and read military aviation blogs. Since 1996, he has written for major worldwide magazines, including Air Forces Monthly, Combat Aircraft, and many others, covering aviation, defense, war, industry, intelligence, crime and cyberwar. He has reported from the U.S., Europe, Australia and Syria, and flown several combat planes with different air forces. He is a former 2nd Lt. of the Italian Air Force, a private pilot and a graduate in Computer Engineering. He has written five books and contributed to many more ones.