Australia Opts for JASSM to Equip F/A-18s
28 Feb 2006
The Australian Department of Defence announced today that the Lockheed Martin Joint Air-to-Surface Stand-off Missile (or JASSM) has been selected as the new long range air-to-surface missile to equip the Australian Defence Force’s F/A-18 Hornet fleet.
The acquisition of long range missiles has been planned in the Defence’s Capability Plan since 2001. It forms a key part of the plan to withdraw the F-111. The new acquisition assures Australia retains its strike capability, whilst maintaining safety of aircraft and crews.
The JASSM is planned to be operational on the Australian Defence Force's F/A-18 Hornet fleet by December 2009. Under a previous concept for the project, the missile would also equip the AP-3C Orion aircraft, but to reduce overall costs and project risk it has been decided to equip the F/A-18 fleet only. Future platforms may also be equipped with the missile, such as the Joint Strike Fighter.