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First launchers for NASAMS air defense system arrive in Australia

Australian NASAMS launchers
Photo: Kongsberg

The first shipment of Mk 2 canister launchers for Australia’s future National Advanced Surface to Air Missile System (NASAMS) have arrived at Raytheon Australia’s Centre for Joint Integration.

Kongsberg Defence Australia (KDAu) announced the milestone after the components arrived in Australia from KONGSBERG’s Norwegian facilities.

The NASAMS launchers that will be delivered to the Australian Army as part of the LAND 19 Phase 7B program are the most modern launcher configuration capable of firing multiple complementary missile types, the company said.

The launchers are now being painted by South Australia-based Defence Coating Systems, whilst KDAu conducts final factory acceptance testing and support to system level NASAMS testing activities.

NASAMS will represent a new short-range ground-based air defense (SHORAD) capability for the Australian Army, delivered by Kongsberg in cooperation with Raytheon Australia, the prime contractor on the program.

NASAMS is produced jointly by Kongsberg and Raytheon Technologies and is in service with, or under delivery to, 12 nations. Raytheon is responsible for delivering its advanced medium-range air-to-air missiles (AMRAAM) for the system, while Kongsberg is supplying launcher systems.

Another component of the SHORAD system will the radars, which will be delivered by CEA Technologies. The vehicle-mounted radars will be delivered in long and short range variants, with the short range variant to be mounted on the Australian-developed Thales Hawkei vehicle.

NASAMS will replace the current SHORAD capability, including the RBS-70, as the Army’s principal air defense weapon. While the Phase 7B solution will be able to operate independently, it will be designed to operate as a subset of the broader Joint Integrated Air and Missile Defence (JIAMD) capability and has a key project interdependency with the Joint Battle Management System to be delivered by project AIR 6500.