April 14, 2017. The U.S. military has dropped America’s most powerful non-nuclear bomb on so-called Islamic State targets in Afghanistan. It is the first time this type of weapon has been used in combat.
A GBU-43/B Massive Ordnance Air Blast Bomb (MOAB), nicknamed the “mother of all bombs”, was dropped at 19:32 local time (15:32GMT) according to U.S. military officials with direct knowledge of the mission.
President Donald Trump called it “another successful job” later Thursday.
The 9`800 kg Massive Ordnance Air Blast combines a KMU-593/B guidance section and BLU-120/B warhead with an 8`425 kg Tritonal explosive fill, according to IHS Jane’s 360.
The MOAB is credited with a blast yield of 11 tonnes (TNT) and, at 9.45 m long, is too large to be dropped from a conventional bomber so is deployed from Lockheed Martin MC-130H special mission aircraft.
The bomb was dropped on a 300m-long network of caves in the Achin district of Nangarhar province, a remote area in the country’s east which borders Pakistan. The Afghan defence ministry said 36 IS fighters were killed in the attack.