This website uses cookies to manage authentication, navigation, and other functions. By using our website, you agree that we can place these types of cookies on your device.

US approves a sale to Australia for 200 AGM-158C Long Range Anti-Ship Missiles LRASM


On February 7, 2020, the U.S. State Department has made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to Australia of up to two hundred (200) AGM-158C, Long Range Anti-Ship Missiles (LRASMs) and related equipment for an estimated cost of $990 million.


US approves a sale to Australia for 200 AGM 158C Long Range Anti Ship Missiles LRASM 925 001 LRASM mounted on F/A-18 Super Hornet. (Picture source US Navy)


The Government of Australia has requested to buy up to two hundred (200) AGM-158C, Long Range Anti-Ship Missiles (LRASMs); and up to eleven (11) ATM-158C LRASM Telemetry Variant (Inert). Also included are DATM-158C LRASM, Captive Air Training Missiles (CATM-158C LRASM), containers, support and test equipment, publications and technical documentation, personnel training and training equipment, U.S. Government and contractor representatives technical assistance, engineering and logistics support services, and other related elements of logistics support. The total estimated cost is $990 million.

This proposed sale will support the foreign policy and national security objectives of the United States. Australia is one of our most important allies in the Western Pacific. The strategic location of this political and economic power contributes significantly to ensuring peace and economic stability in the region.

Australia intends to use the missiles on its F-18 aircraft and will provide enhanced capabilities in defense of critical sea-lanes. The proposed sale of the missiles and support will increase the Australian Navy's maritime partnership potential and align its capabilities with existing regional baselines. This is Australia's first purchase of the missiles. Australia will not have any difficulty absorbing these weapons into its armed forces.

The AGM-158C LRASM (Long Range Anti-Ship Missile) is a stealthy anti-ship cruise missile developed for the United States Air Force and United States Navy by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).

The LRASM is based on the AGM-158B JASSM-ER, but incorporates a multi-mode radio frequency sensor, a new weapon data-link and altimeter, and an uprated power system. It can be directed to attack enemy ships by its launch platform, receive updates via its datalink, or use onboard sensors to find its target. LRASM will fly towards its target at medium altitude then drop to low altitude for a sea skimming approach to counter anti-missile defenses. DARPA states its range is "greater than 200 nautical miles (370 km; 230 mi)." Although the LRASM is based on the JASSM-ER, which has a range of 500 nmi (930 km; 580 mi), the addition of the sensor and other features will somewhat decrease that range. It is estimated that the LRASM has a range of 300 nmi (560 km; 350 mi).