As the CBU-97 approaches its designated aim-point, the TMD skin is severed into three separate panels by an explosive cutting charge. Aerodynamic forces "peel away" these panels exposing the 10 BLU-108 submunitions inside. An airbag system then sequentially ejects the forward bay of 5 submunitions then the aft bay of 5 additional submunitions. Each submunition has a parachute that is sequentially deployed resulting in a linear spacing of submunitions approximately 100' apart. Each submunition then goes through a prescribed sequence of releasing its parachute, firing a rocket motor that stops the submunitions decent and also spins the submunitions on its longitudinal axis and releasing pairs of Skeet’s 90 degrees apart. Each Skeet has a spin/coning motion that results in a circular ground scan pattern. The laser sensor detects changes in height such as the distinctive contour of a vehicle. At the same time, infrared sensors detect heat signatures, such as those emitted by the hot engine of a target vehicle. When the combination of height contours and heat signatures indicative of a target are detected the Skeet detonates, firing an explosively formed penetrator into the target vehicle at high speed, enabling it to penetrate armor plating and destroy what is underneath the armor plating. Note that SFW disables targets using the kinetic energy of the EFP, not an explosive charge.
In more than 100 tests of CBU-97s, each weapon, or dispenser, delivered against a representative column of armored vehicles and trucks, has damaged, on average, three to four armored vehicles. Average spacing between the armored vehicles in these columns has been around 50 meters. Thus, for the eight armored vehicles that fall within a single weapon's 400-meter "footprint," we can expect that nearly half of them will be damaged to at least an "availability kill" (or "A-kill") level. This means that some component of the vehicle has been damaged to the extent that the vehicle must be withdrawn from the line of march and repaired before continuing on.
See also: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ua3nLmE7Kow