Lockheed Martin successfully fired the first tactical configuration Long Range Anti-Ship Missile (LRASM) yesterday from a US Air Force B-1B.
In the test over the Sea Range at Point Mugu, California, a U.S. Air Force B-1B from Edwards Air Force Base, California, released the LRASM.
According to a press release, the missile navigated through all planned waypoints, transitioned to mid-course guidance and flew toward the moving maritime target using inputs from the onboard multimodal sensor. The missile then descended to low altitude for final approach to target area, positively identified and impacted the target.
“This was the first flight of a production representative, tactical configuration LRASM,” said Mike Fleming, LRASM director at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. “The successful flight continues to prove LRASMs ability to find and prosecute targets at sea.”
LRASM is designed to detect and destroy specific targets within groups of ships by employing advanced technologies that reduce dependence on intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance platforms, network links and GPS navigation in electronic warfare environments. The US Air Force say that 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’.
LRASM is a precision-guided, anti-ship standoff missile based on the successful Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile – Extended Range (JASSM-ER). It is designed to meet the needs of US Navy and Air Force warfighters in contested environments.
The air-launched variant provides an early operational capability for the U.S. Navy’s offensive anti-surface warfare Increment I requirement to be integrated onboard the US Air Force B-1B in 2018 and on the US Navy’s F/A-18E/F Super Hornet in 2019.