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Norwegian Advanced Surface to Air Missile System
NASAMS launcher
Type Surface-to-air missile system
Place of origin Norway
Service history
In service 1998–
Used by Norway, Spain, Netherlands, Finland, Chile, United States
Production history
Designer Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace and Raytheon
Manufacturer Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace

NASAMS (Norwegian Advanced Surface to Air Missile System) is a distributed and networked medium to long range air-defence system. NASAMS was the first surface-based application for the AIM-120 AMRAAM (Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missile). The missile itself is named SL-AMRAAM (Surfaced Launched AMRAAM).[1]


The Norwegian company Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace teamed up with Raytheon and initiated the NASAMS programme as a cooperative effort for the Royal Norwegian Air Force. The state-of-the-art network-centric air defence system NASAMS was declared fully operational capable in 1998 but had an initial operational capability as early as in 1994/95.

Until the late 1990s the RNoAF ground based air defence solution, also known as the Norwegian Solution (NORSOL), consisted of three different weapon systems; the 40mm Bofors L70 gun (controlled by the Oerlikon Contraves FCS2000 monopulse doppler tracking radar), the laser beam riding RBS 70 MANPADS system and the NASAMS. All three systems were integrated through the ARCS via field wires and radio. The ARCS maintained connection to higher echelons and ensured protection of friendly aircraft while preventing over- and underkill for all subordinate weapon systems. NASAMS capabilities[2] are enhanced by the system's networked and distributed nature.

NASAMS launcher on a Scania 113H truck.


The RNoAF together with KDA has conducted a mid-life update of the NASAMS, called NASAMS 2, and the upgraded version was first handed over to RNoAF in mid-2006. The major difference the two versions will be the use of Link 16 on NASAMS 2 as well as a better ground radar. Full operational capability (FOC) was expected for 2007.


NASAMS has been exported to Spain, Finland, and the Netherlands. The government of Chile has also ordered NASAMS. [3] [4][5] Several NASAMS were used to guard air space over Washington, D.C. during the 2005 United States presidential inauguration, and are used to protect air space around the White House.[6][7]


NASAMS test firing.
Reloading an AMRAAM missile.

The system integrates US-built AN/TPQ-36A LASR (Low Altitude Surveillance RADAR) 3D radars and AIM-120 AMRAAM missiles with an indigenously developed Battle management C4I system called FDC, short for Fire Distribution Center. The FDC connected to a TPQ-36A radar forms an "Acquisition Radar and Control System" (ARCS). The missile has a horizontal range of up to 25 km. Other sources cite a range of 'over 15 km',[8] but this depend on the missile version used.

AMRAAM missile range:
AIM-120A/B: 55–75 km
AIM-120C-5: >105 km
AIM-120D (C-8): >180 km

Note that ranges for AAMs are estimated for head-on encounters for fast moving aircraft at an altitude, and the range is significantly smaller when the same missiles are launched from stationary ground platforms. Further dimensioning for a stationary ground-launched-missile system is its maximum altitude reach, which by rule of thumb is one third of its maximum horizontal range.


On 22 February 2015, Raytheon announced the development of the Extended Range upgrade to the NASAMS AMRAAM missile offering (AMRAAM-ER). The upgrade is expected to make the missile "even faster and more maneuverable than the current AMRAAM". Flight tests are expected to begin in 2015.[9] Development work began in 2014, and the missile is actually an Evolved Sea Sparrow Missile using AMRAAM guidance. The range extension could not be disclosed, but is expected to be increased to 40–50 km (25–31 mi) with a 45,000 ft (14,000 m) altitude ceiling. Production is expected by 2019.[10]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ sdmin. "Our apologies... The page you tried to view was not found". Retrieved 24 December 2014. 
  2. ^ "Front page -". Retrieved 24 December 2014. 
  3. ^ "Rapid Fire: 2010-06-22". Defense Industry Daily. 2010. Retrieved 2010-06-25. 
  4. ^ Air defence contract with the Netherlands
  5. ^ Dutch Order NASAMS-SLAMRAAM Air Defense Systems
  6. ^ Lund, Elisabeth (2006-02-16). "Norske våpen vokter presidenten". Økonomisk Rapport (in Norwegian). Archived from the original on 2006-05-19. Retrieved June 24, 2012. 
  7. ^ Christensen, Maj. Ola K. (2005-03-08). "The Norwegian Solution!". Battle Griffin 2005 (in Norwegian). Archived from the original on 2005-11-16. Retrieved June 24, 2012. 
  8. ^ Defense Update. "Finland Selects Nowregian/U.S. NASAMS for SA-11 Replacement". Retrieved 24 December 2014. 
  9. ^ Raytheon. "Raytheon unveils extended range AMRAAM". Raytheon. Retrieved 22 February 2015. 
  10. ^ Extended range air defence fires up -, 23 February 2015

External links[edit]