Upgraded NASAMS Air Defense System Can Intercept Ballistic Missiles

The system now incorporates the new AMRAAM-ER missile as well as GhostEye MR radar
  • Defensemirror.com bureau
  • 08:32 AM, April 23, 2024
  • 984
Upgraded NASAMS Air Defense System Can Intercept Ballistic Missiles
AMRAAM-ER missile launch from NASAMS air defense system

Kongsberg is reportedly upgrading its NASAMS anti-aircraft system to intercept ballistic missiles.

This is according to a report from Norwegian news outlet Teknisk Ukeblad citing Kongsberg sources.

Currently, NASAMS is effective against aircraft, helicopters, and cruise missiles but lacks the capability to intercept ballistic missiles due to limitations in missile range and radar height parameters.

According to the report, the upgrade includes the new AMRAAM-ER missile, a variant of the AIM-120C-8 with improved speed and range, which extends the interception radius from 20 to 40 km within ground-based systems. Tests of the AMRAAM-ER equipped on NASAMS were completed in February 2024. The new interceptor also features an advanced guidance system with active radar homing, along with a more powerful 10-inch rocket motor.

Additionally, the GhostEye MR radar system, featuring advanced technology similar to the U.S. military's LTAMDS, has been integrated. This radar, with an active S-band phased array antenna based on gallium nitride transceiver modules, can detect a range of targets including ballistic missiles.

The upgraded NASAMS will replace its current radar, extending its detection capabilities significantly. However, limitations remain in the missile's warhead power, insufficient for critical damage against missiles like the Iskander.

Kongsberg is also collaborating with American company RTX since November 2023 on further enhancements to NASAMS, focusing on operational flexibility and mobility.

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