Air Force orders 308 advanced air-to-ground smart missiles with infrared sensors and inertial navigation

March 24, 2022
JASSM-ER uses precision routing and guidance in adverse weather, day or night, using infrared sensors and anti-jam GPS to find aim points on targets.

EGLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. – Missile designers at Lockheed Martin Corp. will build 308 advanced air-to-ground missiles under terms of a $318.9 million order announced Monday.

Officials of the U.S. Air Force Life Cycle Management Center at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., are asking the Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control segment in Orlando, Fla., to build 308 lot-20 Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile – Extended Range (JASSM-ER) stealthy air-to-ground missiles with containers.

The JASSM-ER is a 2,250-pound cruise missile with a 1,000-pound penetrator and blast-fragmentation warhead. These missiles use precision routing and guidance in adverse weather, day or night, using infrared sensors in addition to anti-jam GPS to find specific aim points on targets.

The missile's guidance relies on an inertial navigation sensor (INS) with updates from Global Positioning System satellites. An imaging infrared seeker recognizes targets and provides terminal guidance. A data link enables the missile to transmit its location and status during flight, which can improve bomb damage assessment.

Related: Lockheed Martin to build six LRASM anti-ship missiles

JASSM, which has been in service since 2009, is a long-range, conventional, air-to-ground, precision standoff missile for the U.S. and allied forces that is designed to destroy high-value, well-defended, fixed and relocatable targets. The JASSM has a range of 230 miles, while the JASSM-ER has a range of 620 miles.

In 2015 the Air Force nominated the JASSM-ER to carry the Counter-electronics High Power Microwave Advanced Missile Project (CHAMP) payload. CHAMP is an electromagnetic warfare technology that destroys electronic equipment with bursts of high-power microwave energy. CHAMP is to be miniaturized to enable the JASSM-ER to carry the payload.

The U.S. Navy AGM-158C Long-Range Anti-Ship Missiles (LRASM) for use against high-priority enemy targets like aircraft carriers, troop transport ships, and guided-missile cruisers, also is a derivative of the JASSM.

The stealthy JASSM missiles have standoff ranges to keep air crews well out of danger from hostile air defense systems, while their stealthy airframes makes the smart munitions extremely difficult to defeat, Lockheed Martin officials say.

Related: Raytheon to build smart munitions with tri-mode seekers

JASSM can be fired from several different aircraft, including the B-1, B-2, B-52, F-16, F/A-18E/F, and F-15E. International JASSM users include the Australian, Finnish, and Polish air forces.

Looking to the future, Lockheed Martin is working on the JASSM to enable the missile to fire from U.S. and international versions of the Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II joint strike fighter aircraft and other international military aircraft.

On this order Lockheed Martin will do the work in Orlando, Fla. and Troy, Ala., and should be finished by January 2026. For more information contact Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control online at, or the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center at

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