Successful demonstration of an ASMP-A missile launch
Jean-Yves Le Drian, French Minister of Defense, expressed his great satisfaction after the successful test launch of a nuclearcapable missile without a nuclear charge.
The Minister congratulated all the women and men of the forces, the Directorate General of Armaments (DGA), the Gendarmerie Nationale and the companies that have worked towards this new success of the French deterrent.
On February 14, 2017, a Rafale-M single-seat fighter belonging to the French Navy took off from Avord Air Base (BA 702) in Central France and completed a flight of over four hours, during which it enacted all the phases of an airborne deterrent mission: long-distance flight, successive aerial refuellings, low-altitude penetration, terrain following and launch of a high-accuracy ASMP-A (Air-Sol Moyenne-Portée-Amélioré) missile on a test area of the DGA’s Biscarrosse missile test centre.
This was the operational assessment firing of the enhanced Rafale/ASMP-A system, and is representative of a real nuclear strike mission carried out by the airborne nuclear component.