The Massive Ordnance Air Blast bomb, a 21,000-pound weapon, is also referred to as “the Mother Of All Bombs.” Engineers at the Air Force Research Lab are developing her infant: a leaner and more modular explosive, with 3-D printing.
“We’ve been working on printing [munitions] for the past five to 10 years,” said John Corley of the Air Force.
Corley told reporters the bomb is designed to include “selectable effects.”
“On any given day you might want it to be the same weapon to give you a small blast footprint, or a large blast footprint, and right now we can control this … height of burst,” he said.
The bomb itself is still a few years away from production, according to the Air Force official.
The Pentagon has deployed additive manufacturing technology to build other weapons, too, like the RAMBO grenade launcher.