Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile Program Moves Forward To Serve Warfighters

Following a series of successful reliability characterization tests, Lockheed Martin received U.S. Government approval to continue development and production of the Joint Air-To-Surface Standoff Missile (JASSM). During the recent tests, the stealthy standoff cruise missile demonstrated its capabilities across a wide variety of targets - including hardened, underground bunkers and air defense systems.

"Thanks to the leadership of Secretary Young and Secretary Payton and their commitment to candid communication with the industry team, we have successfully demonstrated JASSM's reliability and validated the need for the world's first stealthy, standoff cruise missile," said Chris Kubasik, executive vice president for Lockheed Martin Electronic Systems.

"As a result of this effective government-industry collaboration,U.S. and allied Warfighters will have access to a weapon that will allow them to neutralize an enemy's defenses and defense infrastructure in an anti-access environment."

Recertification allows JASSM Lot 7 production to proceed at the company's award winning manufacturing facility in Troy, AL. The Air Force-Lockheed Martin team will produce a weapon that remains extremely cost-effective for the nation's taxpayers, particularly when its unique capabilities are taken into account.

"The system's performance in this latest test series was outstanding," said Randy Bigum, vice president of Strike Weapons at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. "We're eager to move forward with this program and to meet our commitments to both the U.S. Air Force and the Royal Australian Air Force."

JASSM is an autonomous, long-range, conventional, air-to-ground, precision standoff missile designed to destroy high-value, well-defended, fixed and relocatable targets. It is integrated on the B-1, B-2, B-52 and F-16 aircraft. Future platforms include the F-15E, F-35 and RAAF F/A-18.

A 2,000-pound class weapon with a penetrator/blast fragmentation warhead, JASSM cruises autonomously in adverse weather, day or night, using a state-of-the-art infrared seeker in addition to the anti-jam GPS to find a specific aimpoint on the target. Its stealthy airframe makes it extremely difficult to defeat.

The recertification approval also paves the way for continued development of the longer range JASSM-ER system. The extended range variant has over twice the range of the baseline missile. As a result, aircrews and their aircraft are kept well outside the lethal range of an enemy's air defense systems.

While still being compatible with the B-1, B-2, B-52, F-15, and F-16, JASSM-ER will maintain the same outer mold line, reliability, survivability and lethality of the baseline JASSM missile.

by Staff Writers


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