Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace AS has signed a contract worth 700M NOK with the Norwegian Defence Materiel Agency (NDMA) for JSM (Joint Strike Missile) test missiles for the integration phase on the F-35.
As a result of the successful flight test in March and finalization of the development phase in June, the project now enters into an F-35 integration phase scheduled until 2023. This phase includes delivery of a number of test missiles, captive-carriage-, safe separation- and live firing tests.
Before proceeding with integration testing on the F-35A, the JSM was tested at Edwards Air Force Base in southern California, USA on F-16 Fighting Falcon fighter jets from the U.S. Air Force (USAF) 416th Flight Test Squadron (416 FLTS).
“The JSM project continues on schedule and is the only 5th generation missile available on F-35 representing a significant market potential”, says Eirik Lie, President of Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace AS.
The Joint Strike Missile (JSM) is a multi-role air-launched variant of the Naval Strike Missile (NSM), an anti-ship and land-attack missile developed by the Norwegian company Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace (KDA). The missile can be employed against both sea- and land-based targets.
JSM is Norway’s advanced anti-surface warfare (ASuW) missile designed specifically to fit in the internal weapons bay of the new Lockheed Martin F-35A Lighting II fifth-generation stealth fighter aircraft. Norway is also partner nation of the U.S.-led F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) program.
Studies have shown that the F-35 would be able to carry two of these in its internal bays, while additional missiles could be carried externally.
According to FlightGlobal, the missile has an estimated range of 150 nmi (172 mi; 278 km). The range is dependent of the flight profile and Kongsberg claims that the range is over 100 nmi in low-low-low profile and over 300nmi in hi-hi-low flight profiles.
The achievement of initial operational capability (IOC) is expected in 2021 with the release of the F-35’s Block 4 software and the missile is expected to become fully operational in 2025.