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A test performed in September 2021 over Nellis Air Force Base saw an F-35A successfully release two inert B61 Mod 12 nuclear bombs.
As expected, these mock bombs were not fitted with warheads – though they perform almost the same as the standard B61. If the standard version was used, you could expect the B61 to have a yield between 0.3 to 340 kt, depending on the version.
During these tests, the engineers and pilots work together to collect accurate telemetry data to ensure that it functions as intended. Tests like these are vital to the safety of its operators since nuclear weapons differ widely from conventional ones.
As such, any aircraft that intends to field these highly destructive devices must undergo specific nuclear certifications like this one.