The first live test of the AGM-158C Long Range Anti-Ship Missile (LRASM) from the F/A-18 Super Hornet is slated to take place this year.
“Right now, we’re doing captive-carry testing, and we’ll have the first live shot off the F-18 later this year,” said Alan Jackson, Lockheed’s vice president of strike systems told to Military.com.
The AGM-158C LRASM will then become operational in September 2019, he added.
As we have previously reported an F/A-18E/F Super Hornet successfully conducted a “jettison release” test at Naval Air Station (NAS) Patuxent River, Maryland, last year. The move paved the way for the ongoing captive-carry tests at Navy Air Weapons Station China Lake, California, Lockheed said at the time.
Jackson also revealed that the B-1B will carry two more testing of the LRASM before the weapon is operational on the bomber.
The precision-guided, anti-ship standoff missile in fact is expected to be fielded first on the B-1B Lancer bomber.
Noteworthy LRASM was an easy fit for the B-1 because it can already launch the Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile-Extended Range, known as JASSM-ER.
By using advanced technologies that reduce dependence on intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance platforms, network links and GPS navigation, the LRASM is able to detect and destroy specific targets within groups of ships
Once operational, the LRASM will play a significant role in ensuring military access to operate in open ocean/blue waters, owing to its enhanced ability to discriminate and conduct tactical engagements from extended ranges.
Based on the successful JASSM-ER, the LRASM precision-guided, anti-ship standoff missile is designed to satisfy the U.S. Navy and U.S. Air Force (USAF) requirement for a weapon that can be used in anti-access/area-denial threat environments.
Photo credit: Lockheed Martin
Artwork courtesy of AircraftProfilePrints.com
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