Navy approves full rate production for new AARGM anti-radiation missile
The Department of the Navy is investing in a weapon that will transform
the effectiveness of military firepower on the battlefield. The service
recently authorized Full-Rate Production (FRP) of the Advanced Anti-Radiation
Guided Missile (AARGM), a medium range, supersonic air-launched tactical
“This system will truly enhance our warfighting capability,”
said Cmdr. Chad Reed, Anti-Radiation Missile (ARM) deputy program manager
for the Direct and Time Sensitive Strike Program Office (PMA-242) here.
“AARGM will help keep our warfighter safe and reduce the time
we spend in conflict.”
The Navy demonstrated AARGM’s capability during Initial
Operational Test and Evaluation (IOT&E) in spring 2012. PMA-242
team members, in conjunction with Air Test and Evaluation Squadron (VX)
9 and VX-31 at China Lake, flew a total of 633 flight hours on F/A-18C/D/E/F/G
platforms and conducted 12 live fires.
The AARGM is test fired from an F/A-18D at China Lake, Calif. in June
(U.S. Navy photo)
After a successful IOT&E, the program delivered
live rounds and training missiles to the fleet and completed aircrew
and maintenance training in the field in June. A U.S. Marine Corps F/A
18 squadron will be the first forward-deployed unit to operate with
The new weapon addresses current capability gaps in areas where the
Navy deploys and operates its existing Air-to-Ground Missile (AGM),
the High-speed Anti-Radiation Missile (HARM). Specifically, AARGM defeats
multiple countermeasures that have been developed by U.S. adversaries
since HARM was deployed in the 1980’s. It will be carried on the
FA-18C/D, FA-18E/F, EA-18G and Italian Air Force Tornado Electronic
Countermeasures/Reconnaissance (ECR) aircraft.
(U.S. Navy video)
“AARGM is designed to increase our warfighting
capabilities in neutralizing enemy air defenses and will provide aircrew
with an additional tool for the Supression and Destruction of Enemy
Air Defense mission,” Reed added.
The Navy plans to award a FRP contract to ATK for the production
of 72 missiles for U.S. Navy and nine missiles for the Italian Air
Force later this year. Delivery is anticipated in late 2013.