F-35 suc­cess­fully con­ducts first fir­ings of MBDA’s ASRAAM


The F-35 Light­ning II stealth fighter jet has suc­cess­fully con­ducted its first fir­ing tri­als of the MBDA ad­vanced short range air-to-air mis­sile (ASRAAM). The tri­als are the first time a Bri­tish-de­signed mis­sile has been fired from the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, and the first time any non-US mis­sile has been fired from the air­craft.

Con­ducted from both Naval Air Sta­tion Patux­ent River and Ed­wards Air Force Base in the United States, the ef­fort has seen both flight tri­als and air-launched fir­ings of the ASRAAM suc­cess­fully take place.

MBDA is cur­rently un­der con­tract, awarded in 2016, to pro­duce the highly ca­pa­ble in­frared (IR) guided air-to-air mis­sile for the UK’s F-35s. ASRAAM’s large rocket mo­tor and clean aero­dy­namic de­sign gives it a high kine­matic ca­pa­bil­ity that de­liv­ers su­pe­rior end-game per­for­mance com­pared with other coun­tries’ in-ser­vice IR mis­siles.

The tri­als were con­ducted by the inte- grated test teams at Patux­ent and Ed­wards, which in­clude Lock­heed Martin, BAE Sys­tems, MBDA and Northrop Grum­man.

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