U.S. Approves $1.8 Billion Weapons Sales to Taiwan

The U.S. State Department has approved a possible sale of $1.8 billion worth of armaments, consisting of HIMARS launchers, missiles and reconnaissance pods, to Taiwan under the Foreign Military Sales (FMS) program.

Pentagon’s Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) delivered the required certification notifying Congress of the possible sales on Oct. 21, the agency, which oversees FMS sales, said in a statement Wednesday.

The potential sale includes 11 M142 HIMARS (High Mobility Artillery Rocket System) launchers along with 64 M57 ATACMS (Army Tactical Missile System) tactical ballistic missiles (TBMs) with a combined estimated worth of $436.1 million, 135 AGM-84H SLAM-ER (Standoff Land Attack Missile Expanded Response) air-launched stand-off cruise missiles worth estimated $1.008 billion and six MS-110 reconnaissance pods worth estimated $367.2 million.

The complete sales package approved for Taiwan, represented by the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office (TECRO) in the U.S., are as follows;


The M142 HIMARS/ATACMS sales package approved for Taiwan includes 11 M142 HIMARS launchers; 64 M57 ATACMS Unitary missiles; seven M1152Al High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicles (HMMWVs)/Humvees; 11 M240B 7.62mm machine guns; and 17 International Field Artillery Tactical Data Systems (IFATDS).

Also included are 54 M28A2 Low Cost Reduced Range Practice Rocket Pods (LCRRPR); 11 M2Al .50 caliber machine guns; 22 AN/NRC-92E dual radio systems; seven AN/NRC-92E dual radio ground stations; 15 AN/VRC-90E single radio systems; 11 M1084A2 cargo Family of Medium Tactical Vehicles (FMTV) Resupply Vehicles (RSV); two M1089A2 cargo wrecker FMTV RSV; 11 M1095 trailer cargo FMTV, 5-ton; support equipment; communications equipment; spare and repair parts; test sets; laptop computers; training and training equipment; publication; systems integration support; technical data; Stockpile Reliability Program (SRP): Quality Assurance and Technical Assistance Teams; U.S. Government and contractor technical, engineering, and logistics support services; and other related elements of logistical and program support. The total estimated program cost is $436.1 million.

The prime contractor will be Lockheed Martin Missile and Fire Control, Grand Prairie, TX.

The MGM-140 ATacMS is a short-range  solid-propellant fueled tactical ballistic missile (TBM). This surface-to-surface missile (SSM) has a range of over 100 miles (160 km), with solid propellant, and is 13 feet (4.0 m) high and 24 inches (610 mm) in diameter.

The ATACMS can be fired from multiple rocket launchers, including the wheeled M142 HIMARS and tracked M270 Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS). M142 HIMARS can carry one MGM-140 ATACMS missile while the M270 MLRS can carry two missiles each.

M57E1 ATACMS launch
Launch of M57E1 ATACMS MOD munition from an M142 HIMARS launcher at White Sands Missile Range. (Photo Credit: U.S. Army)


The AGM-84H SLAM-ER sales package approved for Taiwan includes 135 AGM-84H SLAM-ER missiles; four ATM-84H SLAM-ER telemetry missiles; and 12 CATM-84H Captive Air Training Missiles (CATM).

Also included are 151 containers, spare and repair parts, 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 program cost is $1.008 billion.

The principal contractor of the sale will be the Boeing Company, St. Louis, MO.

The AGM-84H/K SLAM-ER (Standoff Land Attack Missile-Expanded Response) is an advanced stand off precision-guided, air-launched cruise missile (ALCM) with an operational range of around 270 km.

The new missile will provide Taiwan’s Armed Forces with all-weather, day and night, precision attack capabilities against both moving and stationary targets.

The missiles can be equipped on the F-16 Fighting Falcon fighter jets operated by the Taiwan’s Republic of China Air Force (ROCAF). ROCAF currently operates the older F-16A/B variant and have recently awarded contract for 66 of the F-16’s newest variant, the F-16C/D Block 70.

AGM-84H Standoff Land Attack Missile-Expanded Response (SLAM-ER)
Rendering of AGM-84H SLAM-ER standoff cruise missile.

MS-110 Recce Pod

The MS-110 Recce Pod sales package approved for Taiwan includes six MS-110 Recce Pods; three Transportable Ground Stations; one Fixed Ground station; spare and repair parts; repair and return; site surveys; integration and test equipment; system support and equipment; personnel training and training equipment; publications and technical documentation; U.S. Government and contractor engineering, technical, and logistical support services; and other related elements of logistical and program support. The total estimated program cost is $367.2 million.

The principal contractor will be Collins Aerospace, Westford, MA.

MS-110 Multispectral Airborne Reconnaissance System is the next-generation multispectral version of the dual-band DB-110 Airborne Reconnaissance System pod. The MS-110 integrates seamlessly into the existing DB-110 reconnaissance architecture, utilizing common ground support equipment and exploitation stations.

The procurement of new MS-110 recce pod will improve the Taiwan’s capability to meet current and future threats by providing timely Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR), capabilities for its security and defense.

The pod is compatible with carriage on fast jets (F-16 (operated by ROCAF), F-15, F/A-18, Typhoon, Rafale), manned ISR aircraft, and MALE UAVs such as the MQ-9 Reaper.

DB-110 Reconnaissance Pod
DB-110 Airborne Reconnaissance System pod on an F-16 fighter jet. The MS-110 is the next-generation multispectral version of the dual-band DB-110 pod. Photo via Collins Aerospace.

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