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Norway, US team up to integrate JSM on F-35

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An artistic illustration of the Joint Strike Missile and the F-35 fighter. A Kongsberg photo

OSLO/KONGSBERG (BNS): The Governments of Norway and the US have agreed to collaborate on the integration of the Joint Strike Missile (JSM) on the F-35 Lightening II Joint Strike Fighter aircraft.

The announcement was made by Norwegian Defence Minister Espen Barth Eide on June 15.

"...we will begin preparations for the final phase of Joint Strike Missile (JSM) development after receiving confirmation from US authorities of their support for the integration of the missile into the F-35," Eide said.

Confirmation of JSM integration support was provided in a letter from US Secretary of Defence, Leon Panetta to the Norwegian Minister earlier last week, the Defence Ministry said.

Norwegian defence major Kongsberg Gruppen, which has been contracted to design and develop the new weapon for the F-35 fifth-generation fighter jets, said the agreement opened great opportunities for it and other Norwegian industry.

"It is of great importance that the US authorities have confirmed their support for the integration of the JSM on the F-35. In doing so, the operational needs of the Norwegian Armed Forces and international partners will be met. Furthermore, this will be an important contribution to the industrial content of the F-35 procurement," Walter Qvam, CEO of Kongsberg, said.

The Joint Strike Missile is being developed as a long-range stand-off missile with both land- and anti-ship capabilities to carry out anti surface warfare (ASuW) and naval fire support (NFS) missions.

It is presently being designed to be carried both externally and internally in the bomb bay of the F-35 jet. Kongsberg and Lockheed - the manufacturer of F-35 fighters - have signed an agreement to integrate the JSM on the advanced stealth jet.

Kongsberg sees a large potential for future deliveries of the JSM to other F-35 customers.

"The Norwegian-developed JSM represents one of the most advanced weapons available within its category, and will further enhance the operational capabilities of the F-35. Total market potential for the JSM is estimated to be between NOK 20 and 25 billion/USD 3.3 and 4.2 billion," the Norwegian Defence Ministry said.

Norway has approved a proposal to buy 52 F-35 combat planes for its armed forces.

Tags:

Norway  US  F-35  JSM  Missile  
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