​What Fell on Belgorod: Video Shows How the russian Bunker Busters Work

Illustrative photo: BetAB-500ShP bombs falling / Open source photo
Illustrative photo: BetAB-500ShP bombs falling / Open source photo

Special BetAB-500ShP are designed to destroy airfield runways and fortifications of reinforced concrete

After the incident officially called by the russian ministry of defense as "extraordinary release of an aircraft munition" with consequent falling of it on the city of Belgorod in russia, a detailed video from the site appeared. This footage made it easy to identify the exact type of the bomb dropped by the carrier.

Although we cannot see the munition itself, the way it detonated told a lot. This type of a bomb that made it into the ground and blew up after a while in Belgorod is a special rocket-assisted bunker buster called BetAB-500ShP.

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BetAB-500ShP bomb
BetAB-500ShP bomb / Illustrative photo credits: CAT-UXO, Open sources

For comparison, here are the videos from Belgorod and from a proving ground during tests of a BetAB-500ShP bomb dropped by a Su-34.

The moments the bombs dug into the ground and exploded coincide. The amount of kinetic energy for such a penetrating effect is provided by the rocket propellant. These bombs are intended for use against runways, highways, fortifications of reinforced concrete etc. Thanks to the propellant, the munition can be dropped from low altitudes, whereas an ordinary bunker buster would need a longer fall to reach proper kinetic energy.

The bomb can dive 2-3 meters into the ground or break through 55 cm of reinforced concrete. Then, the time fuze triggers the 45-kg warhead. Notably, Su-34 frontline bomber adopted the BetAB-500ShP bomb only in 2020.

On a side note, if the munition landed just 10 meters to the side, it would hit a residential multi-story building.

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