The most recent version of the Advanced Short Range Air-to-Air Missile (ASRAAM) has achieved Initial Operating Capability, UK Defence Journal has reported.
The ASRAAM Block 6 will be integrated with the UK’s Eurofighter Typhoon in 2022 and the F-35 in 2024.
The missile features “upgraded sub-systems built-in cooling and a new British-built seeker with more pixels,” unlike its previous version with a US-built seeker, the outlet added.
No US-built Components
Having no US-built components allows the missile to be exported without the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) restrictions. ITAR requires US approval for exports of arms that feature American-built components.
Washington refused a request to sell the earlier missile to Saudi Arabia.
The missile has a range of over 25 kilometers (15.53 miles) and “accepts target information via the aircraft sensors, such as the radar or helmet mounted sight but can also act as an autonomous infrared search and track system,” according to the manufacturer.
The Royal Air Force, Navy, and Indian Air Force currently operate the missile.