UK Approved to Acquire up to 200 AIM-120D Missiles
WASHINGTON, D.C., the USA (BulgarianMilitary.com), July 13, 2018, Author: Bm Team, Photo credit: en.wikipedia.org / The photo shows Grumman F-14 Tomcat aircraft carrying an AMRAAM under its wing during a test over the Pacific Missile Test Centre in 1982.
The sale of up to 200 Raytheon’s AIM-120D radar-guided medium-range air-to-air missiles to the United Kingdom at approximately $650 million was approved by the U.S. State Department, learned BulgarianMilitary.com
The AIM-120D sale to the UK also covers missile containers, weapon system support equipment, support and test equipment, repair and return support, warranties, spare and repair parts, publications and technical documentation, maintenance and personnel training, and training equipment. However, it has not been included in the sale notice information about the aircraft that would carry the AIM-120D missiles.
Through that possible sale, the Royal Air Force will be armed with the longest range variant of the AIM-120. The range of the D-version is considered to be more than 167km. This is approximately the range of detection of one active electronically scanned array radar.
The AIM-120D features a data link through which the targeting system on board the launching aircraft may direct the missile towards any enemy target, which is taking evasive manoeuvres. The AIM-120 missile family has passed 4,200 test shots and 10 air-to-air combat victories as reported by the maker Raytheon Missile Systems Company of Tucson, Arizona.
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Besides the USA, among the other countries that have AIM-120D missiles are Canada and Australia.
On 10th July, the U.S. State Department also gave the green light to the sale of twenty-eight AIM-120C-7 AMRAAMs (Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missiles) to Denmark at the price of approximately $90 million for the purposes of arming the Lockheed Martin F-16 and future F-35 Lightning II fighter fleets of Denmark. The C-variant of the AIM-120 AMRAAM has been steadily upgraded since it was introduced. However, being an earlier version, it features a shorter range in comparison to the AIM-120D.
The AIM-120 AMRAAM is a modern beyond-visual-range air-to-air missile (BVRAAM) capable of all-weather day-and-night operations. The current existing variants are AIM-120A, AIM-120B, AIM-120C, AIM-120C-4/5/6/7, AIM-120D. The AIM-120A is no longer in production. The original developer is Hughes Aircraft.
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