Modern ARH (FOX 3) Missile - History, Performance & Discussion

I’ve compiled a summary that brings together information on various FOX 3 missiles I’m aware of.

These details were sourced from the internet and various War Thunder forums, with links provided where applicable. Unfortunately, I haven’t retained all my sources, so if you have any questions about specific data or information, please feel free to ask in the forum, and I’ll do my best to retrieve the necessary information for you.

MODERN ARH MISSILES

Disclaimer

An ARH (active radar homing) missile (also known as a FOX 3 missile) is a missile that has his own radar seeker. Indeed, unlike semi-active radar-guided missiles that depend on radar signals from the launching aircraft or another platform to illuminate the target, active radar missiles have their own active radar seeker. This seeker emits its own radar signals and receives the reflections bounced back from the target, allowing the missile to operate independently once it’s close to the target. The active radar seeker enables the missile to autonomously track and home in on the target after launch. This characteristic gives the missile a “fire-and-forget” capability, meaning the launching platform (aircraft or ground-based system) can maneuver or engage other targets after firing the missile. ARH missiles are effective in all weather conditions, day or night, as they rely on their own radar signals rather than depending on infrared that can be limited in by a heavy cloud cover. They are designed for long-range engagements, allowing the launching platform to fire the missile before being within visual range of the target: they are called BVRAAM (Beyond Visual Range Air to Air Missile) (the value of more than 20-30kms for BVR is commonly accepted).

However, the range of the active radar in the missile is limited to about a few tens of kilometers. So, for BVR shot the missile is not active the whole way but only at the end, close to the target. To guide the missile to the target, the missile can use: inertial navigation (once located by the aircraft, the missile know the location of the target and guide itself to the presumed point of impact); datalink mid-course guidance (the aircraft keep giving information to the missile while in flight to give it a more accurate point of impact) and Home on Jam (the missile autonomously goes to the source of the jamming).

*All maximum range are only an indication; those numbers are only obtainable for an aircraft firing at high altitude and high speed against a cooperative target (no evasive maneuvers) flying straight into the missile. The same missile fired at low altitude against a non-cooperative target can have its maximum range divided by 5 or more. The battery of the missile can also be a limiting factor for a missile since a missile powered for only a short amount of time cannot go far away even with good kinematics. This is an issue for Soviet missile that have a shorter battery life compared to NATO missile and so less guidance time.

*The maneuvering capability of a missile is only valid for when the missile has maximum energy (at the end of its burntime), It decrease rapidly as the missile lose speed over time. For example, an AIM-9L, a 30G missile will be able to pull only about 10G after a couple of kilometers. The G limit is given for single plane only.

USA

AIM-54 Phoenix

Spoiler

The AIM-54 Phoenix is an advanced long-range air-to-air missile that has been an integral part of the United States Navy’s arsenal since 1974. Designed and manufactured by Hughes Aircraft Company (now Raytheon), the Phoenix missile was developed to serve as the primary armament for the Grumman F-14 Tomcat, a carrier-based fighter aircraft.

With its imposing size and impressive capabilities, the AIM-54 Phoenix became known as one of the most potent air-to-air missiles in the world during its service. It was designed to engage multiple targets (especially bombers) at extended ranges, making it an essential asset for defending carrier battle groups and maintaining air superiority over vast distances.

The AIM-54 has been retired from US service in 2004 but is still active (as of 2023) in the Islamic Republic of Iran Air Force.

The missile is capable of lofting, which involves ascending to higher altitudes within the atmosphere, where the air is thinner, to reduce drag and thus extend its range.

AIM-54A :

The initial model, which became operational with the U.S. Navy around 1974, is the same version currently employed by Iran. The AIM-54 missile operates in four distinct modes: sample data semi-active (datalink mid-course guidance), continuous semi-active (similar to a Fox 1 missile), active (Fox-3 fire and forget), and Home on Jam (also known as HoJ). It lacked an inertial navigation system and had to depend on either the aircraft’s radar or its own radar at the end of its trajectory for navigation.

Characteristics:

Length: 5m
Width: 0.38m
Fin span: 0.91m
Weight: 443,613kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 5-6
Minimum Range: 3700m
Maximum Range: 135km
Propulsion: Aerojet Mk60 or Rocketdyne (later Hercules) Mk47 Mod 0
Seeker Range: AN/DSQ-26 with: 24km (large target); 18km (medium target); 11km (small targets)
Warhead: (60.68 kg) Mk82 Mod 0 blast fragmentation and impact fuse
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, continuous semi-active, active, home-on jam
Maneuvering Capability: 18G single plane, 25G dual plane. The missile can use dual plane.

AIM-54B :
DISCLAIMER: The missile has not been produced.

Also known as the ‘Dry’ missile. A version with simplified construction and no coolant conditioning. Did not enter series production. Developmental work started in January 1972. 7 X-AIM-54B missiles were created for testing, 6 of them by modifying pilot production IVE/PIP rounds. After two successful test firings, the ‘Dry’ missile effort was cancelled for being “not cost effective.”

Same characteristics as the AIM-54A.

AIM-54C :

Development of an improved version of the AIM-54 missile began in 1976. The 1979 Iranian Revolution expedited this process, as it raised concerns about the security of the AIM-54As provided to Iran for their F-14A Tomcats. In August of the same year, the first development models were successfully created. Subsequently, in 1981, the initial AIM-54Cs were delivered, leading to a shift in production from AIM-54A to AIM-54C the following year. The AIM-54C achieved its Initial Operational Capability in 1984, featuring a cutting-edge digital WGU-11/B guidance and WCU-7/B control system. By capitalizing on advancements in computer technology, the missile incorporated a programmable digital signal processor and an autopilot that utilized a strap-down inertial navigation system, significantly enhancing the missile’s ability to counter electronic countermeasures (ECCM). The upgraded motor also contributed to improved range and speed, making the missile highly esteemed.

Characteristics:

Length: 5m
Width: 0.38m
Fin span: 0.91m
Weight: 443,613kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 5-6
Minimum Range: 3700m
Maximum Range: 200km
Propulsion: Rocketdyne (later Hercules) Mk47 Mod 1 (reduced smoke)
Seeker Range: 24km (large target); 18km (medium target); 11km (small targets)
Warhead: 60.68 kg Mk82 Mod 0 blast fragmentation and impact fuse or 60.68 kg WDU-29/B blast fragmentation and impact fuse warhead in a WAU-16/B or WAU-20/B
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, continuous semi-active, active, home-on jam
Maneuvering Capability: 18G single plane, 25G dual plane. The missile can use dual plane.

AIM-54C+ (ECCM) :

The AIM-54C+, also referred to as AIM-54C ECCM/Sealed, represented the final significant operational improvement for the AIM-54 missile. Initially proposed in 1985 as a configuration Engineering Change Proposal (ECP) for the AIM-54C, this version offered enhanced ECCM performance and eliminated the need for externally stored coolant. Instead, it relied on an internally supplied coolant source, removing the requirement for coolant containers on the LAU-132A pylons of the F-14D. This upgrade not only reduced the overall weight but also streamlined the system.

By the year 2000, all AIM-54 missiles remaining in the inventory of the U.S. Navy were AIM-54Cs, as all AIM-54As had been used up. Subsequently, the AIM-54 missile was retired in 2004, two years prior to the retirement of the F-14 Tomcat itself from active service.

Same characteristics as the AIM-54C.

For more information: The AIM-54 Phoenix missile - Technology, History and Performance

AIM-120 AMRAAM

Spoiler

The AIM-120 Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air Missile, commonly known as AMRAAM, is a highly sophisticated and versatile weapon system that has played a pivotal role in modern aerial combat. Developed by the United States, the missile has been widely adopted by numerous allied nations around the world, solidifying its reputation as one of the most effective and reliable air-to-air missiles in service.

The AIM-120 AMRAAM was designed to engage and neutralize enemy aircraft at medium to long ranges, offering a critical advantage in air superiority battles. Its development began in the 1980s to replace the earlier AIM-7 Sparrow missile, aiming to address the shortcomings and limitations of its predecessor. The first pre-production units were delivered in October 1988, but it was not declared operational until September 1991.

The AMRAAM possesses a robust and agile control system, enabling it to execute high-speed maneuvers and adapt to changing target conditions. Its radar seeker is also equipped with advanced counter-countermeasures to counter enemy efforts to evade interception.

The missile’s versatility is another notable aspect, as it can be integrated into various modern fighter aircraft, including the F-15, F-16, F/A-18, and several others. This widespread compatibility has facilitated multinational operations and interoperability among allied air forces.

Throughout its operational history, the AIM-120 AMRAAM has proven its effectiveness in numerous real-world conflicts and exercises. Its successful engagements and reliable performance have solidified its place as a critical component of air-to-air warfare, providing fighter pilots with a potent tool to maintain air dominance and ensure mission success.

The missile is capable of lofting, which involves ascending to higher altitudes within the atmosphere, where the air is thinner, to reduce drag and thus extend its range.

AIM-120A :

Initial production variant of the AIM-120 Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air Missile (AMRAAM). It was the first version to be deployed by the United States Air Force and Navy in the early 1990s.

The AIM-120’s operates in 4 distinct modes. Those modes are sample data semi-active (datalink mid-course guidance), inertial navigation, active (Fox-3 fire and forget) and Home on Jam (also called HoJ).

Characteristics:

Length: 3.65m
Width: 0.178m
Fin span: 0.53m
Weight: 157.8kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 4
Minimum Range: 2000m (head on); 600m (tail chaise)
Maximum Range: 70km (Up to 15-20km when ground launched)
Propulsion: Hercules WPU-6/B propulsion unit
Seeker Range: 16kms for medium size target
Warhead: 22kgs WDU-33/B warhead (HE-Frag)
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active, home-on jam
Maneuvering Capability: 35G

AIM-120B:

In 1994, the first AIM-120B versions were delivered, marking an important advancement over the initial AIM-120A version. The AIM-120B distinguished itself with a novel WGU-41/B guidance system equipped with reprogrammable EPROM (Erasable Programmable Read-Only Memory) modules and an upgraded processor.

This updated guidance system offered improved capabilities in terms of energy management for long-range shots, ultimately resulting in a higher Probability of Kill (PK).

Same characteristics as the AIM-120A.

AIM-120C-3/C4:

In 1996, a new iteration, the AIM-120C, was introduced. The most apparent change in this version was the modification of its fins, which were shortened to allow it to be carried in the weapons bay of the F-22. However, it retained compatibility with all the other aircraft that were already qualified to carry the AIM-120A and AIM-120B versions.

Additionally, the AIM-120C featured an enhanced WGU-44/B guidance system, which further improved its capacity for energy management during long-range engagements.

Characteristics:

Length: 3.65m
Width: 0.178m
Fin span: 0.484m
Weight: 157.8kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 4
Minimum Range: 2000m (head on); 600m (tail chaise)
Maximum Range: 70km
Propulsion: Hercules WPU-6/B propulsion unit
Seeker Range: 16kms for medium size target
Warhead: 22kgs WDU-33/B warhead (HE-Frag) /20kgs WDU-41/B warhead (HE-Frag) for the C-4
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active, home-on jam
Maneuvering Capability: 35G (supposedly less than the AIM-120A/B)

AIM-120C-5 :

This version benefits from an upgraded larger rocket engine (WPU-16/B) and a more compact control section due to the miniaturization of onboard electronics. Despite the increase in weight, these enhancements enable the missile to reach further distances. Initial deliveries started in 2000.

Characteristics:

Length: 3.65m
Width: 0.178m
Fin span: 0.484m
Weight: 161.5kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 4
Minimum Range: 2000m (head on); 600m (tail chaise)
Maximum Range: 105km (Up to 25km when ground launched)
Propulsion: Hercules WPU-16/B propulsion unit. Boost-only motor
Seeker Range: 16kms for medium size target
Warhead: 20kgs WDU-41/B warhead (HE-Frag)
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active, home-on jam
Maneuvering Capability: 35G (supposedly less than the AIM-120A/B)

AIM-120C-6 :

Improved fuze (Target Detection Device) compared to its predecessor.

Same characteristics as the AIM-120C-5.

AIM-120C-7 :

The C7 version, whose development commenced in 1998, was designed to fill the void left by the retirement of the AIM-54 Phoenix missile, which was officially phased out on September 30, 2004. This version received updated software that significantly enhanced the resolution and resistance to interference of the WGSN (Weapon System Software and Hardware). The use of a more contemporary and compact component base allowed for an expansion of the engine bay’s length once more. The AIM-120 C7 began entering into active service in 2007.

Characteristics:

Length: 3.65m
Width: 0.178m
Fin span: 0.484m
Weight: 161.5kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 4
Minimum Range: 2000m (head on); 600m (tail chaise)
Maximum Range: 120km (Up to 30km when ground launched)
Propulsion: ?
Seeker Range: ? but improved over the AIM-120C5
Warhead: 20kgs WDU-41/B warhead (HE-Frag)
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active, home-on jam
Maneuvering Capability: 35G (supposedly less than the AIM-120A/B)

AIM-120C8/D :

The AIM-120D represents a rebranded version of the AIM-120C8. This variant boasts an even extended range, approximately 50% greater than that of the AIM-120C-7, alongside improved guidance systems, and a higher probability of achieving a successful target kill. These advanced missiles were deployed for operational use after 2016.

The AIM-120D comes equipped with a data link that connects it with the launcher, an inertial navigation system (INS) that can be adjusted using GPS, and superior high off-boresight capabilities.

Characteristics:

Length: 3.65m
Width: 0.178m
Fin span: 0.484m
Weight: 162.4kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 4
Minimum Range: 2000m (head on); 600m (tail chaise)
Maximum Range: 160-180km
Propulsion: ?
Seeker Range: ? but improved over the AIM-120C5
Warhead: 20kgs WDU-41/B warhead (HE-Frag)
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active, home-on jam
Maneuvering Capability: 35G (supposedly less than the AIM-120A/B)

For more information: The AIM-120 'AMRAAM' - History, Design, Performance & Discussion

AIM-260 JATM

Spoiler

DISCLAIMER: The missile has not yet been produced.
image
(For illustration purpose only, since we don’t yet know how the AIM-260 will look like)

The AIM-260 program began in 2017 in response to long-range missiles developed by potential adversaries, specifically the Chinese PL-15. FSAT testing for the JATM was confirmed to have started as early as April 2020, and testing in general for the missile is currently ongoing. It is yet to achieve initial operational capability (IOC). The AIM-260 production is expected to overtake AIM-120 production by 2026.

In November 2021 it was revealed that the missile will have similar dimensions to the AIM-120, in order to ensure a minimal disruption of launch platform technology and ensure compatibility with the F-22 Raptor which would allow a decrease in the U.S. Air Force’s fleet of F-22 due to the increase in combat effectiveness.

The missile is capable of lofting, which involves ascending to higher altitudes within the atmosphere, where the air is thinner, to reduce drag and thus extend its range.

Characteristics:

Length: Similar to AIM-120C/D (<3.96m for the F22 missile bay)
Width: Similar to AIM-120C/D
Fin span: Similar to AIM-120C/D
Weight: ?
Maximum Speed: Mach 5
Minimum Range: ?
Maximum Range: Over 200kms
Propulsion: ?
Seeker Range: Supposedly AESA
Warhead: ?
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active, home-on jam
Maneuvering Capability: ?

RUSSIA

R-27EA

Spoiler

DISCLAIMER: The missile has not been produced.
image

The R-27EA missile, also known as the AA-10 Alamo-E, is a medium-range, air-to-air missile developed by the Soviet Union during the Cold War era. Designed to be employed by various aircraft, including fighter jets and interceptors, the R-27EA played a significant role in the armament of the Soviet Air Force and its allies.

The missile’s development began in the 1970s as an upgrade to the earlier R-27 (AA-10 Alamo A) missile, aiming to enhance its capabilities and effectiveness in combat scenarios. One of the key improvements in the R-27EA was the incorporation of an active radar seeker, enabling it to engage targets without the need for illumination by the parent aircraft.

Outwardly, it can only be differentiated from the R-27ER by the conically shaped radome instead of the usual ogival shape.

The missile isn’t capable of lofting.

Characteristics:

Length: 4.7m
Width: 0.23m
Fin span: 0.77m
Weight: 350kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 4.5
Minimum Range: ?
Maximum Range: 130kms
Propulsion: Single stage solid propellant rocket motor
Seeker Range: 9B-1103K active seeker with unknown range
Warhead: 39kg HE
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active ,inertial, active
Maneuvering Capability: 35G

R-77

Spoiler

The R-77 missile, also known by its NATO reporting name “AA-12 Adder,” is a highly advanced air-to-air missile developed by Russia. It belongs to the class of beyond-visual-range (BVR) missiles, designed to engage and destroy enemy aircraft at considerable distances, enhancing the capabilities of modern fighter aircraft.

The development of the R-77 missile began in the 1980s as a successor to the earlier R-27 missile. Its primary objective was to improve the engagement range, accuracy, and resistance to countermeasures. Upon its successful introduction, the R-77 became a vital component of Russia’s aerial arsenal, equipping various fighter aircraft of the Russian Air Force and several other international operators.

The R-77 missile incorporates sophisticated guidance systems, including an active radar seeker, which allows it to autonomously track and engage targets even in challenging conditions. It can be launched from various fighter platforms, making it a versatile weapon in air-to-air combat scenarios.

Over the years, the R-77 has undergone several upgrades, enhancing its performance, range, and lethality, solidifying its reputation as a capable and reliable weapon system. As one of the modern BVR missiles, the R-77 contributes significantly to the overall combat effectiveness of fighter aircraft and plays a crucial role in maintaining air superiority during military operations.

R-77:

Initial version of the missile. It entered production in 1984, and it underwent comprehensive state acceptance trials, concluding in 1991. Finally, on February 23, 1994, the missile was formally inducted into active service.

The missile isn’t capable of lofting (to be verified)

Characteristics:

Length: 3.6m
Width: 0.20m
Fin span: 0.4m
Weight: 175kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 4
Minimum Range: 300m
Maximum Range: 80kms (Up to 12km when ground launched. Due to enormous transonic drag and seeker limitation)
Propulsion: Single stage solid propellant rocket motor
Seeker Range: 9B-1348 seeker with 16 km range for a medium size target (5M^2 RCS)
Warhead: 22.5kg HE-Frag continuous rod
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active, home-on jam
Maneuvering Capability: Up to 9 G target maneuvers

R-77-1:

The R-77-1 represents a weightier and significantly enhanced iteration of the R-77 missile. It incorporates an improved seeker with enhanced transmitter power, increased receiver sensitivity, and superior resistance to both artificial and natural interference, such as chaff and ground clutter.

The R-77-1 also features improved aerodynamic attributes, achieved through the use of an elongated nose that is radio-transparent, a streamlined tail end, and recessed lattice steering wheel attachment units. The altered angles and shapes of the fins contribute to reduced missile drag in the transonic region, specifically in the Mach 0.9-1.3 range.

The missile is capable of lofting, which involves ascending to higher altitudes within the atmosphere, where the air is thinner, to reduce drag and thus extend its range.

Characteristics:

Length: 3.71m
Width: 0.20m
Fin span: 0.4m
Weight: 190kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 4
Minimum Range: 300m
Maximum Range: 110kms
Propulsion: Single stage solid propellant rocket motor
Seeker Range: 9B-1248 seeker with 25 km range for a medium size target (5M^2 RCS)
Warhead: 22.5kg HE-Frag continuous rod
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active, home-on jam
Maneuvering Capability: Up to 9 G target maneuvers

R-77 PD:
DISCLAIMER: The missile has not been produced.

This variant has been test-fired and uses a solid-fuel ramjet engine. It has an estimated max range of around 175kms. There’s not much information around this missile.

For more information: The R-77 'ADDER' - History, Design, Performance & Discussion

R-77M

Spoiler

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The R-77M is a Mid Life Update (MLU) of the missile, designed with the specific purpose of integration onto the SU-57 fighter jet. This upgrade encompasses various enhancements to the missile’s performance and capabilities, aiming to better align it with the advanced technology and requirements of the SU-57, a next-generation fighter aircraft.

The R-77M likely includes improvements in its seeker, guidance systems, and aerodynamics to ensure it operates effectively within the advanced air combat environment that the SU-57 is designed for.

The missile is capable of lofting, which involves ascending to higher altitudes within the atmosphere, where the air is thinner, to reduce drag and thus extend its range.

Characteristics:

Length: About 4M
Width: 0.20m
Fin span: ?
Weight: 190kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 4
Minimum Range: 300m
Maximum Range: 193kms
Propulsion: Dual-pulse motor configuration
Seeker Range: 9B-1348M radar seeker with a maximum lock-on range of 25 km
Warhead: ?
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active, home-on jam
Maneuvering Capability: Probably the same as the R-77

R-37

Spoiler

The R-37, also known as the RVV-BD and nicknamed the “AA-13” by NATO, is a long-range, air-to-air missile developed by the Soviet Union. It represents one of the most potent and capable weapons in its class, designed to engage and destroy high-value airborne targets at extended ranges.

The development of the R-37 began in the late 1970s, with the primary objective of countering strategic airborne threats, such as airborne early warning and control (AEW&C) aircraft, tanker aircraft, and other vital airborne platforms. The missile’s extensive range and formidable speed allowed it to effectively engage targets at distances far beyond most other air-to-air missiles of its time.

The missile is capable of lofting, which involves ascending to higher altitudes within the atmosphere, where the air is thinner, to reduce drag and thus extend its range.

R-37

Initial version of the missile

Characteristics:

Length: 4.06m
Width: 0.38m
Fin span: 0.72m
Weight: 510kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 5/Mach 6
Minimum Range: 3.1km
Maximum Range: 300kms
Propulsion: Single stage solid propellant rocket motor
Seeker Range: MFBU-510(M, A1, A2) or MFBU-610 (Agat 9B-1388 RS) with a 40km range for a medium size target (5^2 RCS)
Warhead: 60kg
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active ,home on jam
Maneuvering Capability: Up to 8 G target maneuvers

R-37M

The R-37M designation has since been used for a modernized variant of the missile, also known as RVV-BD.

Characteristics:

Length: 4.06m
Width: 0.38m
Fin span: 0.72m
Weight: 510kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 5/Mach 6
Minimum Range: 3.1km
Maximum Range: 400kms
Propulsion: Dual stage solid propellant rocket motor (Same motor as the R37 + a jettisonable rocket booster)
Seeker Range: SLN 9B-1103M-350 seeker
Warhead: 60kg
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active ,home on jam
Maneuvering Capability: Up to 8 G target maneuvers

KS-172

Spoiler

DISCLAIMER: The missile has not been produced.
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The Novator KS-172 was a Russian air-to-air missile project designed as an "AWACS killer” at ranges up to 400 km. The missile had various names during its history, including K-100, Izdeliye 172 (‘project 172’), AAM-L (RVV-L), KS–172, KS-1, 172S-1 and R-172. The airframe appears to have been derived from the 9K37 Buk surface-to-air missile (SAM) but development stalled in the mid-1990s for lack of fund. It appears to have restarted in 2004 after a deal with India, who wants to produce the missile in India for their Su-30MKI fighters. Development has ceased and the project is closed.

The missile is capable of lofting, which involves ascending to higher altitudes within the atmosphere, where the air is thinner, to reduce drag and thus extend its range.

Characteristics:

Length: 7.4m
Width: 0.51m
Fin span: 0.75m
Weight: 750kg
Maximum Speed: Unknown (probably above Mach 5)
Minimum Range: Unknown but probably around 5kms
Maximum Range: 400kms
Propulsion: Dual stage solid propellant rocket motor
Seeker Range: 9B-1103M seeker
Warhead: 50kg HE
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active, home on jam
Maneuvering Capability: Up to 12 G target maneuvers (to be verified)

For more information: ☭History, Design & Performance of All Russian Air-to-Air Missiles (IR, SARH, ARH)☭ - Soviet Union - War Thunder - Official Forum

CHINA

PL-11B

Spoiler

DISCLAIMER: The missile has not been produced.
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Wishing to equip itself with a semi-active radar-guided medium-range air-to-air missile, China bought Italian Aspide in the mid-1980s, then obtained a manufacturing license from which it derived the HQ-61 ground-to-air defense system. From this system, China then attempted to produce the missile it needed.

Developed from 1987 onwards by a Shanghai research center, the K/AKK-11 (future PL-11) suffered from the breakdown in scientific cooperation with Italy following the repression of the Tiananmen Square demonstrations in 1989. Testing began in 1992, but was not completed until 2001. However, the missile appears to have entered service in limited quantities in the mid-1990s.

By 2001, the PL-11 was already virtually obsolete. It had only a brief career, equipping only the first-generation Shenyang J-8H and Chengdu J-10A, especially the PL-11A version, which added inertial guidance for targets that needed to be illuminated only at the end of the trajectory. The PL-11B with active guidance would never have entered service.

The PL-11B, also referred to as the PL-11 AMR, is a modified version of the PL-11 missile. In this variant, the original semi-active seeker has been replaced with an active AMR-1 seeker

Characteristics:

Length: 3.89m
Width: 0.2m
Fin span: 0.68m
Weight: 220kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 4
Minimum Range: Unknown but probably around 1/2kms
Maximum Range: 75kms
Propulsion: Single stage solid propellant rocket motor
Seeker Range: AMR-1 seeker
Warhead: 10.24kg HE
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active
Maneuvering Capability: 25G

PL-12

Spoiler

The PL-12 , NATO reporting name: CH-AA-7 Adze is an active radar-guided beyond-visual-range air-to-air missile developed by the People’s Republic of China. It is considered comparable to the US AIM-120 AMRAAM and the Russian R-77.

Development of the PL-12 (SD-10) began in 1997. The first public information of the Leihua Electronic Technology Research Institute’s PL-12 – then called the SD-10 – emerged in 2001. Development was assisted by Vympel NPO and Agat of Russia. Liang Xiaogeng is believed to have been the chief designer. Four successful test firings were made in 2004. The missile entered People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) service in 2005.

The missile is capable of lofting, which involves ascending to higher altitudes within the atmosphere, where the air is thinner, to reduce drag and thus extend its range.

PL-12

Initial version of the missile.

Characteristics:

Length: 3.934m
Width: 0.203m
Fin span: 0.67m
Weight: 199kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 4
Minimum Range: Unknown but probably around 1/2kms
Maximum Range: 100kms
Propulsion: Dual-thrust solid rocket motor
Seeker Range: Indigenous seeker (Probably similar to the 9B-1348 seeker (same as R-77) with up to 25/30km range)
Warhead: 24kg HE
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active
Maneuvering Capability: Up to 9G target maneuvers / 38G

PL-12A/SD-10B

An enhanced PL-12 variant features alterations to its seeker and digital processor. It is said to include a passive mode designed for anti-radiation missions. Home on Jam is a possible addition for the missile.

Same characteristic as the PL-12

SD-10

The SD-10 is the export version of the PL-12 .While mock-ups of the SD-10 made their first public appearance as early as 2002 at a trade show in Pakistan, the first known live-fire test of the missile did not occur until 2005.

Characteristics:

Length: 3.85m
Width: 0.203m
Fin span: 0.674m
Weight: 180kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 4
Minimum Range: Unknown but probably around 1/2kms
Maximum Range: 70km
Propulsion: Dual-thrust solid rocket motor
Seeker Range: 9B-1348 seeker (same as R-77) with up to 25/30km range
Warhead: 24kg HE
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active
Maneuvering Capability: Up to 9G target maneuvers / 38G

SD-10A

The SD-10A missile was officially exhibited at the 2008 Zhuhai Air Show.

Enhanced SD-10 with a better indigineous seeker, better anti-jamming capability and better range.

Same characteristic as the PL-12.

PL-15

Spoiler

The PL-15 ,NATO reporting name: CH-AA-10 [Abaddon] is an active radar-guided long-range air-to-air missile developed by the People’s Republic of China.

The PL-15 is developed by Luoyang-based CAMA. The missile was test fired in 2011 and referenced by Chinese state media in 2015. It was spotted in 2013 mounted on a prototype of Chengdu J-20.

The PL-15 entered People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) military service around 2015 to 2017. The carrying platforms include the Chengdu J-10C, the Shenyang J-16 and the Chengdu J-20. It has also been spotted on the Shenyang J-11B. The PL-15 has begun to replace the earlier PL-12 as the standard beyond-visual-range missile for both PLAAF and People’s Liberation Army Naval Air Force (PLANAF) fighters.

The missile is capable of lofting, which involves ascending to higher altitudes within the atmosphere, where the air is thinner, to reduce drag and thus extend its range.

PL-15

Version used by the Chinese Air Force.

Characteristics:

Length: 3.996m
Width: 0.203m
Fin span: 0.67m
Weight: 200-230kg
Maximum Speed: >Mach 4
Minimum Range: Unknown but probably around 1/2kms
Maximum Range: >200km
Propulsion: Dual-pulsed solid-fuel rocket motor
Seeker Range: AESA seeker
Warhead: ?
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active
Maneuvering Capability: ?

PL-15E

Export version of the PL-15, used by Pakistan

Characteristics:

Length: 3.996m
Width: 0.203m
Fin span: 0.67m
Weight: 210kg
Maximum Speed: >Mach 4
Minimum Range: Unknown but probably around 1/2kms
Maximum Range: 145km
Propulsion: Dual-pulsed solid-fuel rocket motor
Seeker Range: AESA seeker
Warhead: ?
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active
Maneuvering Capability: ?

PL-17/Pl-20

Spoiler

The PL-17 or PL-20 is an active radar-guided beyond-visual-range air-to-air missile developed by the People’s Republic of China for the People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF). The missile has claimed range of 400 km (250 mi) and is intended to target larger targets such as tanker and early warning and control (AEW&C) aircraft.

The missile is capable of lofting, which involves ascending to higher altitudes within the atmosphere, where the air is thinner, to reduce drag and thus extend its range.

Characteristics:

Length: 6M
Width: ?
Fin span: ?
Weight: ?
Maximum Speed: >Mach 4
Minimum Range: ?
Maximum Range: 400km
Propulsion: Dual-pulsed solid-fuel rocket motor
Seeker Range: Multimode seeker with both active AESA radar and IR-homing
Warhead: ?
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active
Maneuvering Capability: ?

PL-21

Spoiler

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In 2016, China successfully test fired a very long range air-to-air missile, which was believed to be the PL-21. PL-21 is estimated to have a range of over 300 kilometers and powered by a ramjet engine.

The missile is capable of lofting, which involves ascending to higher altitudes within the atmosphere, where the air is thinner, to reduce drag and thus extend its range.

Characteristics:

Length: > 5.5m
Width: 0.250-0.300m
Fin span: ?
Weight: 270-500kg
Maximum Speed: >Mach 4
Minimum Range: ?
Maximum Range: > 300km
Propulsion: Ramjet engine
Seeker Range: AESA radar
Warhead: ?
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active
Maneuvering Capability: ?

For more information: Chinese Air-To-Air missiles, History, Performance & Discussion

TAIWAN

TC-2

Spoiler

The Sky Sword II (Chinese: Tien Chien II), or TC-2, is a Taiwanese beyond-visual-range air-to-air missile. It has an inertial navigation system, a data-link for mid-course guidance and active radar homing for terminal guidance, beyond visual range. It also has ECCM capability and can engage multiple targets. According to Su Tzu-yun, chief executive officer at the Center for Advanced Technology at Tamkang University, they are a cost-effective design which can perform a key role in Taiwan’s defense strategy, and substantially offset China’s air superiority.

Designed in the 1990’s, it entered in the Taiwanese Air force in 1999. In theory at least 240 missile were produced from 1997 to 2004.

The missile isn’t capable of lofting (to be verified).

TC-2

Initial variant of the missile

Characteristics:

Length: 3.593m
Width: 0.19m
Fin span: ?
Weight: 184kg
Maximum Speed: >Mach 4
Minimum Range: ?
Maximum Range: 60 km ((Up to 15km when ground launched) / TC-2N: TC-2 with 1m additional booster (Up to 30km when ground launched))
Propulsion: Single stage solid propellant rocket motor
Seeker Range: Pulse Doppler seeker with 9.3km detection range
Warhead: 22kg pre-fragmented HE
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active
Maneuvering Capability: Around 30G (Similar to AIM-120)

TC-2C

Upgraded version of the missile with upgrade in range and ECCM. It features a number of incremental improvements including an improved rocket motor and improved electronic components.

Characteristics:

Length: 3.593m
Width: 0.19m
Fin span: ?
Weight: 184kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 6
Minimum Range: ?
Maximum Range: 100 km
Propulsion: Single stage solid propellant rocket motor
Seeker Range: Pulse Doppler seeker with 9.3km detection range with improved ECCM over the TC2
Warhead: 22kg pre-fragmented HE
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active
Maneuvering Capability: Around 30G (Similar to AIM-120)

FRANCE

MICA EM

Spoiler

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The missile formerly known as the Matra MICA and now established as MBDA MICA started out as a project to replace the Super 530D and R.550 Magic missiles completely. What Matra had set out to do was to produce a BVR-capable missile with a thrust vectoring motor and interchangeable sensors. This would mean that the body, motor and otherwise would be the same in dimensions, configurations, and weight for either variant (IR or EM/RF). The only differences being the sensor installed into the missile. This would provide pilots the opportunity of choosing the sensors best suited for the certain situations they faced themselves in. It also brought forth an advantage in that the potential adversaries would not know what series of steps to take to defeat the missile. A unique characteristic of the missile’s motor is its purple flame while the motor is burning.

The first MICA firing took place in 1992, and the missile entered service in 1996.

The missile is capable of lofting, which involves ascending to higher altitudes within the atmosphere, where the air is thinner, to reduce drag and thus extend its range.

Characteristics:

Length: 3.1m
Width: 0.16m
Fin span: 0.56m
Weight: 112kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 4.5
Minimum Range: 350m
Maximum Range: 80 km (Up to 20km when ground launched)
Propulsion: Single stage solid propellant rocket motor
Seeker Range: Thales AD4A Active Doppler Radar (10 seconds time to pitbull)
Warhead: 12kg Radar/Impact
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active, Home on Jam
Maneuvering Capability: 50G+ with TVC. (50g up to 7km, 30g up to 12km for VL-MICA). Can do a 180° turn in 3s. Managed to shoot down a target behind the fighter at a range more than the maximum range of the MAGIC 2.

MICA NG EM

Spoiler

DISCLAIMER: The missile has not yet been produced.

The MICA NG exhibits similarities, but differences compared to the earlier generation. From the exterior, there are no differences because it uses the same body and dimensions of the earlier generation, but instead is now more efficient and features newer seekers. The commonality with the previous generation allowed for streamlining of logistics and maintenance, as well as easy integration into existing systems. The electronics are condensed, and with the space savings, more propellant is included to increase the overall range.

The MICA NG also converts from a single pulse motor to using a double-pulse motor, but the second booster varies in terms of when it turns on, depending on the type of threats it’s engaging, as well as the dynamic situation it faces itself in. A benefit of the second booster being used in later flight ranges is that the thrust vectoring could potentially function to provide greater maneuverability at the tail end portion of its flight against highly maneuverable targets.

The missile is capable of lofting, which involves ascending to higher altitudes within the atmosphere, where the air is thinner, to reduce drag and thus extend its range.

Characteristics:

Length: 3.1m
Width: 0.16m
Fin span: 0.56m
Weight: 112kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 4.5
Minimum Range: 350m
Maximum Range: 130 km (Up to 40km when ground launched)
Propulsion: Dual-Pulse solid-fuel rocket motor.
Seeker Range: AESA seeker
Warhead: 12kg Radar/Impact
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active, Home on Jam
Maneuvering Capability: 50g+ TVC. Can do 50g up to around 80-90km thanks to dual pulse motor. Can do a 180° turn in 3s.

For more information: The "Silent Killer" Missile - MBDA MICA - Performance and Discussion Thread (WIP)

EUROPEAN

Meteor

Spoiler

The Meteor is a European active radar guided beyond-visual-range air-to-air missile (BVRAAM) developed and manufactured by MBDA. It offers a multi-shot capability (multiple launches against multiple targets), and has the ability to engage highly maneuverable targets such as jet aircraft, and small targets such as UAVs and cruise missiles in a heavy electronic countermeasures (ECM) environment with a range far in excess of 200 kilometers. A solid-fueled ramjet motor allows the missile to cruise at a speed of over Mach 4 and provides the missile with thrust and mid-course acceleration. A two-way data link enables the launch aircraft to provide mid-course target updates or retargeting if required, including data from other parties. The data link can transmit missile information such as functional and kinematic status, information about multiple targets, and notification of target acquisition by the seeker. According to MBDA, Meteor has three to six times the kinetic performance of current air-to-air missiles of its type. The missile is equipped with both proximity and impact fuses to maximize destructive effects and reliability.

The missile is capable of lofting, which involves ascending to higher altitudes within the atmosphere, where the air is thinner, to reduce drag and thus extend its range.

Characteristics:

Length: 3.7m
Width: 0.178m
Fin span: Around 0.65m
Weight: 190kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 4.5
Minimum Range: Unknown (probably over 2km)
Maximum Range: Over 200km (60km No Escape Zone)
Propulsion: Single stage solid propellant rocket motor to propel it to over Mach 2/3 then throttleable ducted rocket (ramjet)*
Seeker Range: Active seeker derived from the Thales AD4A Active Doppler Radar
Warhead: 25kg blast-fragmentation
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active, Home on Jam
Maneuvering Capability: Around 30G (Similar to Aim-120)

*The goal of the booster is to make the missile go to Mach 3/4 where the Ramjet is the most efficient.
The ISP of a Ramjet engine is better for those speed compared to a conventional rocket.

Spoiler

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IRAN

FAKOUR

Spoiler

The Fakour-90 ( ‘Wisdom-90’) is an Iranian air-to-air missile based on the AIM-54 Phoenix. It is solely deployed on Iran’s F-14 Tomcats. While not confirmed for use in service, it has also been tested for usage on Iranian MiG-29s.

The missile was developed by the Iranian Army, the Ministry of Defence and Armed Forces Logistics, and the Air Force. In October 2011, Iran announced that the missile had reached the stage of mass production.

The missile is capable of lofting, which involves ascending to higher altitudes within the atmosphere, where the air is thinner, to reduce drag and thus extend its range.

Characteristics:

Length: Similar to AIM-54
Width: Similar to AIM-54
Fin span: Similar to AIM-54
Weight: Similar to AIM-54
Maximum Speed: Mach 5
Minimum Range: Similar to AIM-54
Maximum Range: 150km
Propulsion: Single stage solid propellant rocket motor
Seeker Range: Active radar seeker
Warhead: Unknown
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active, home-on jam
Maneuvering Capability: Similar to AIM-54

ISRAEL

Derby

Spoiler

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In the late 1980s, plans for a specific Kfir configuration aircraft included requirements for an Active Radar Homing (ARH) missile. Rafael, in collaboration with the subcontracted company Mbat, undertook the development of this new missile. The Israeli Defense Forces (IDFAF) had no intention of procuring the missile themselves but supported its development and required its adaptation for use with the F-16. By 2002, the missile was ready for service and sale, with export orders received from countries such as India, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, and South Africa (which developed its own version of the Derby missile).

The Derby missile is, on the whole, comparable to the MICA missile, featuring similar maneuverability and range characteristics. It is optimized to create a larger “no escape zone” (15km compared to the 5km range of the Python 4 missile). The missile follows a high-trajectory loft flight path to achieve extended ranges, compensating for its aerodynamic and propulsion limitations when compared to missiles like the AIM-120. According to Rafael, at an altitude of 25,000 feet, with two targets closing head-on at Mach 0.9, the Derby missile can achieve a maximum range of 63km. In close-range combat, its maneuverability is described as being similar to the Python 3. When used in Lock-On Before Launch (LOBL) mode, the Derby’s seeker can be coupled to the aircraft’s radar or helmet-mounted sight. The Derby missile employs the same roll fins as the Python 4 and 5, allowing it to roll into an optimal bank trajectory for the fins to maximize effectiveness.

The missile is capable of lofting, which involves ascending to higher altitudes within the atmosphere, where the air is thinner, to reduce drag and thus extend its range.

Derby:

Initial variant of the missile.

Characteristics:

Length: 3.62m
Width: 0.16m
Fin span: 0.64m
Weight: 118kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 4
Minimum Range: Under 2km
Maximum Range: Around 70km (Up to 20km when ground launched)
Propulsion: Motor based off the Python 4 but with greater thrust
Seeker Range: Active radar seeker with 12km range against fighter jet
Warhead: 11 (from the Python 4) or 23 kg High Explosive ???
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active, home-on jam
Maneuvering Capability: 35G

I-Derby:

This enhanced iteration of the original Derby missile features several improvements, including a more advanced seeker, upgraded software, enhanced Electronic Counter-Countermeasures (ECCM), and the ability to engage targets while looking down, significantly improving its overall capabilities.

Same characteristics as the Derby.

I-Derby ER

Spoiler

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I-Derby ER missile features a more potent motor that provides it with extended range capabilities. This missile incorporates a “second kick” motor, which operates independently from the first-stage motor and can be activated at any point during flight. The second kick is designed to activate when the missile is in close proximity to the target, providing a significant boost in energy and substantially expanding the missile’s “no escape zone.” Rafael asserts that this missile offers approximately 80% of the performance of the Meteor missile but at only a third of the cost, making it a cost-effective alternative.

The missile is capable of lofting, which involves ascending to higher altitudes within the atmosphere, where the air is thinner, to reduce drag and thus extend its range.

Characteristics:

Length: 3.62m
Width: 0.16m
Fin span: 0.64m
Weight: 122kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 4
Minimum Range: Under 2km
Maximum Range: More than 100km (Up to 40km when ground launched)
Propulsion: Improved motor which extended range by over 35%.Dual-Pulse solid-fuel rocket motor.
Seeker Range: Active radar seeker with better ECCM than the Derby
Warhead: 11 (from the Python 4) or 23 kg High Explosive
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active, home-on jam
Maneuvering Capability: 35G

Sky Spear

Spoiler

DISCLAIMER: The missile has not yet been produced.
image
(Python 5 (TOP); I-DERBY ER (MIDDLE); Sky Spear (BOTTOM))

The Sky Spear is a 6th generation long range air to air missile developed by RAFAEL. It was unveilled the 20th of June 2023 during the Paris Air Show.

The missile is capable of lofting, which involves ascending to higher altitudes within the atmosphere, where the air is thinner, to reduce drag and thus extend its range.

Characteristics:

Length: Smaller than the I-DERBY ER
Width: 0.16m (Acording to images, same as the I-DERBY ER)
Fin span: A lot smaller than I-DERBY ER
Weight: ?
Maximum Speed: ?
Minimum Range: ?
Maximum Range: Significantly exceeds the I-Derby ER (over 100km ++)
Propulsion: Three-pulse rocket motor (supporting the boost, sustain, and endgame pulses)
Seeker Range: New RF seeker technology that allows for early lock-on, a more accurate end game, and a substantial leap in EW immunity.
Warhead: ?
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active, home-on jam
Maneuvering Capability: Unknown (smaller control surface but more efficient rocket propulsion for more endgame energy/maneuvrability)

For more information: ✡︎History, Design, and Performance of Israeli Air-to-Air Missiles - Israel - War Thunder - Official Forum

INDIA

ASTRA

Spoiler

The ASTRA missile is an air-to-air beyond visual range (BVR) missile system designed for use by the Indian Air Force. It is a crucial component of India’s defense arsenal, offering advanced capabilities in aerial combat. ASTRA can engage and destroying enemy aircraft at ranges beyond visual range, enhancing the Indian Air Force’s air superiority and strategic capabilities.

Developed as part of India’s efforts to enhance its indigenous defense capabilities, ASTRA represents a significant achievement in the country’s missile technology. It incorporates advanced features such as active radar homing, smokeless propulsion, and electronic counter-countermeasures, making it a formidable weapon in modern air warfare. It’s in service since 2019 in the Indian air force.

The missile is capable of lofting, which involves ascending to higher altitudes within the atmosphere, where the air is thinner, to reduce drag and thus extend its range.

Characteristics:

Length: 3.6m
Width: 0.178m
Fin span: ?
Weight: 154kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 4.5
Minimum Range: 500m
Maximum Range: 20 km in tail chase mode and 110 km in head on chase mode at 15km (90km for maneuverable target)
44km head on at 8km and 21km head on at sea level.
Propulsion: Smokeless Solid propellant rocket.
Seeker Range: Active radar seeker with 13-15km range for a 5^m Rcs target.
Warhead: 15kg HE pre-fragmented
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active, home-on jam
Maneuvering Capability: 30-40G

More info about the seeker:

ASTRA MK2

Spoiler

DISCLAIMER: The missile has not yet been produced.

The MK2 version of the ASTRA missile is being developped on by the DRDO and features a advanced dual-pulse rocket booster and a home-grown AESA seeker. This missile was made to rival the American AIM-120D and the Chinese PL-15.

The missile is capable of lofting, which involves ascending to higher altitudes within the atmosphere, where the air is thinner, to reduce drag and thus extend its range.

Characteristics:

Length: 3.628m
Width: 0.178m
Fin span: ?
Weight: 154kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 4.5
Minimum Range: 500m
Maximum Range: 160km
Propulsion: Dual-Pulse solid-fuel rocket motor.
Seeker Range: AESA seeker
Warhead: Unknown
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active, home-on jam
Maneuvering Capability: 30-40G

ASTRA MK3

Spoiler

DISCLAIMER: The missile has not yet been produced.
image

A future variant Mk-3 based on Solid Fuel Ducted Ramjet (SFDR) engine is being jointly developed by India and Russia. The missile was first tested on 30 May 2018 and further test was carried out on 8 February 2019. The aim of the program to develop an indigenous missile rivalling AIM-260 JATM and MBDA Meteor.

The missile is capable of lofting, which involves ascending to higher altitudes within the atmosphere, where the air is thinner, to reduce drag and thus extend its range.

Characteristics:

Length: 3.628m
Width: 0.178m
Fin span: 0.2m
Weight: 218kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 4
Minimum Range: 500m
Maximum Range: 340km at 20km altitude; 190km at 8 km altitude.
Propulsion: Solid fuel ducted ramjet
Seeker Range: AESA seeker
Warhead: Unknown
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active, home-on jam
Maneuvering Capability: 30-40G

JAPAN

AAM-4

Spoiler

The AAM-4, short for Advanced Air-to-Air Missile 4, is a cutting-edge, medium-range air-to-air missile developed by Japan. Designed to be deployed primarily by the Japan Air Self-Defense Force (JASDF), the AAM-4 represents a significant advancement in aerial combat capabilities. This sophisticated missile is known for its exceptional speed, range, and accuracy, making it a formidable weapon in modern air warfare. With its advanced guidance and tracking systems, the AAM-4 plays a crucial role in ensuring the defense and security of Japanese airspace, contributing to the country’s overall military preparedness.

The missile is capable of lofting, which involves ascending to higher altitudes within the atmosphere, where the air is thinner, to reduce drag and thus extend its range.

AAM-4:

Initial version of the missile. It entered service in 1999.

Characteristics:

Length: 3.67m
Width: 0.207m
Fin span: 0.8m
Weight: 222kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 4-5
Minimum Range: Probably under 2km
Maximum Range: 100km
Propulsion: Solid propellant rocket.
Seeker Range: Active radar seeker
Warhead: Unknown
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active, home-on jam
Maneuvering Capability: 30G

AAM-4B:

Upgraded version with a new AESA seeker and better range. Introduced in 2010.

Characteristics:

Length: 3.67m
Width: 0.207m
Fin span: 0.8m
Weight: 222kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 4-5
Minimum Range: Probably under 2km
Maximum Range: 120km
Propulsion: Solid propellant rocket.
Seeker Range: AESA Active radar seeker
Warhead: Unknown
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active, home-on jam
Maneuvering Capability: 30G

TURKEY

Gökdoğan

Spoiler

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The Gökdoğan (Peregrine) is an advanced beyond visual range air-to-air missile, with an estimated range spanning from 35 to 54 nautical miles (approximately 65 to 100 kilometers). It is claimed to offer performance similar to that of the American AIM-120 AMRAAM missile. The Peregrine features a solid-state active radio frequency smart seeker with fire-and-forget capabilities, along with electronic counter-countermeasures. It utilizes all-aspect engagement capabilities and employs home-on-jam techniques, incorporating a data link that allows lock-on after launch capabilities.

The manufacturer has emphasized the Peregrine’s high thrust and reduced smoke solid propellant technology, as well as its fully electronic, safe, and reliable rocket motor arming and firing system. The missile is designed to maximize the probability of a successful target kill, and its fuze is engineered for reliability. It complies with the MIL-STD-1553 and MIL-STD-1760 military standards and is intended for use with the LAU-129 guided missile launcher. It finished testing in 2022 and should start to enter service in 2023.

The missile is capable of lofting, which involves ascending to higher altitudes within the atmosphere, where the air is thinner, to reduce drag and thus extend its range.

Characteristics:

Length: ?
Width: ?
Fin span: ?
Weight: ?
Maximum Speed: Mach 4+
Minimum Range: Probably under 2km
Maximum Range: 65-100km
Propulsion: Reduced smoke solid propellant rocket.
Seeker Range: Active radar seeker with LPI (Low Probability of Intercept)
Warhead: Unknown
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active, home-on jam
Maneuvering Capability: ?

SOUTH AFRICA

R-DARTER

Spoiler

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The Kentron V4 (Radar Darter) medium-range air-to-air missile, which has been in service with the South African Air Force (SAAF) since approximately 1995, represents a significant advancement in beyond visual range (BVR) air-to-air radar-guided missiles, offering capabilities on par with the AMRAAM missile. This weapon served as the primary medium-range armament for the SAAF’s Cheetah C fighters until both the missile and the Cheetah aircraft were retired in April 2008. Notably, when the Saab Gripen fighter force was scheduled to enter service around 2012, the SAAF faced a lack of a suitable BVRAAM (Beyond Visual Range Air-to-Air Missile) for these new aircraft.

The V4 missile was meticulously designed to ensure resistance against electronic countermeasures, and it possessed the flexibility to be upgraded to meet evolving threats. It boasted an active radar seeker head, which, when combined with the modern radar system on board the aircraft, allowed pilots to track multiple targets and launch multiple missiles if needed. It operated in two distinct modes: lock on before launch for short-range engagements and lock on after launch for long-range engagements. In the former mode, the missile’s seeker could be slaved to the aircraft’s radar or the pilot’s helmet-mounted cueing system, guiding the missile from launch to the target. In the latter mode, the missile initially used inertial guidance immediately after launch, subsequently activating the seeker to home in on the target.

Despite speculations in the international media suggesting that the V4 was a derivative of Israel’s Rafael Derby missile, South African engineers involved in the project insisted that there was no Israeli contribution to the V4’s design, despite the noticeable similarities between the two missiles. Instead, it was understood that the development of the Derby missile began in Israel in the early 1980s, with South Africa joining the program later and providing funding. The V4/Derby missile was apparently a collaborative effort, with Israeli and South African teams each responsible for specific components of the missile’s development.

As the Gripen was poised to enter service, plans called for an upgrade of the V4 missile. However, due to the significant costs associated with the upgrade and the extensive testing phase, it was ultimately decided to retire the V4 missile in April 2008, coinciding with the retirement of the Cheetah aircraft. The Gripen was intended to be equipped with a new BVR missile as a replacement.

The missile is capable of lofting, which involves ascending to higher altitudes within the atmosphere, where the air is thinner, to reduce drag and thus extend its range.

Characteristics:

Length: 3,62
Width: 0,16
Fin span: ?
Weight: 118kg
Maximum Speed: Mach 4+
Minimum Range: Probably under 2km
Maximum Range: 80km
Propulsion: Solid propellant rocket.
Seeker Range: Active radar seeker
Warhead: Unknown
Guidance Type: Sample data semi-active, inertial, active, home-on jam
Maneuvering Capability: ?

OTHER

For more information on IR (FOX 2) Missile with IRCCM, click this link.

*EDITS:

Spoiler

Edit 1: Changed the maximum speed for the AIM-54. From MACH 4/5 to MACH 5/6.
Edit 2: Changed the maneuvrability for the AIM-54. From 18G to 25G.
Edit 3: Improved the R-77-1 section about the upgrade over the R-77.
Edit 4: Removed the R-33S section.
Edit 5: Removed the R-27EM section.
Edit 6: Changed the Derby image. Added a I-Derby section. Changed the maneuvrability for the Derby. From 40/50G to 45/50G.
Edit 7: Changed values for the ASTRA MK3.
Edit 8: Added the Sky Spear section.
Edit 9: Changed characteristic about the PL-12.
Edit 10: Added the Edit section.
Edit 11: Added disclaimer for missile not yet in production or that never entered production.
Edit 12: Added spoiler to reduce the post length.
Edit 13: Improved the Meteor section about it’s propulsion.
Edit 14: Improved and reworked the PL-12 section about the SD-10 variant. Added a seeker type for the R-37. Added propulsion details for the AIM-120C5.
Edit 15: Improved and reworked the ASTRA and ASTRA MK3 section. Added the ASTRA MK2 missile. Improved the I-DERBY ER propulsion section.
Edit 16: Removed the ASTRA MK2 image.
Edit 17: Added link to the FOX2 thread. Removed the comparaison of the range of surface to air launched A-A missiles and added repective values on the missile characteritics.
Edit 18: Improved multiple description and various text on all the missile. Changed back the Derby missile to 40/50G (said to be as maneuvrable as a Python 3).
Edit 19: Changed the size of title/name of the missile for better readability
Edit 20: Changed the size of the “Characteristic”
Edit 21: Added a Turkey section and the Gökdoğan missile.
Edit 22: Changed the MICA maneuvrability section (copied from the FOX2 thread)
Edit 23: Added a South Africa section and the R-Darter missile
Edit 24: Changed the max range of the DERBY missile
Edit 25: Changed the maneuvrability of the AIM-120 family to 35g (from 28 to 35g). Changed the maneuvrability of the Derby family to 35g (from 40/50g).

16 Likes

It’s not ARH, it’s SARH


IMG_20230921_165850

1 Like

And this isn’t ARH too, it’s SARH

Indeed i’m wrong, modifying the thread now.
I tougth the digital component added in the R-33S were for an ARH seeker.
Ty for your aditional sources.

1 Like

It’s just a R-27ER that can loft?
The R-27EM has been removed from the thread

1 Like
Source

R-27ER in game can loft

Important to note that SD-10 has slightly different dimensions to PL-12 with SD-10 advertising a 70km range and using the same seeker as the R-77 while PL-12 advertises 100km and an indigenous seeker.

  • Length: 3.85 m( SD-10 ), 3.934 m( PL-12, SD-10A )
  • Wingspan: 0.674 m( SD-10 ), 0.67 m( PL-12, SD-10A )
1 Like

The AIM-54 classifications around the 54C really become kinda weird ngl.

I’ve seen the names AIM-54C, AIM-54C ECCM/Sealed, AIM-54C+, and AIM-54D. C+ seems to sometimes be used as a short form for the 54C ECCM/Sealed, but seems to actually be more related to the 54D?

The difference between the 54C and the ECCM/Sealed variant (from what I’ve been able to piece together) is that the ECCM/Sealed variant uses some of but not all components tested on the AIM-54C+/54D variant.

The AIM-54C+/D program was tested successfully but never adopted, apparently on a cost basis, but incorporated new reprogrammable memory, a new high power TWT transmitter, and low sidelobe antennae, along with upgraded seeker electronics, and was tested successfully in 1990.

It seems only the reprogrammable memory was adopted in the eventual ECCM/Sealed variant due to budget constraints.

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it doesnt loft, you can manually loft it but thats the same with all missiles that have ETA guidance restrictions

No he have own small loft, but it’s still a loft :)

Proof?

https://www.navy.mil/DesktopModules/ArticleCS/Print.aspx?PortalId=1&ModuleId=724&Article=2168381

Some AIM-54C (ECCM/sealed is the same missile) were retrofitted to the C+ standard

C+ (High power) was its own standard that was improved over the C (ECCM/sealed) and it was also independently produced before the C (ECCM) even entered service.

C+ was fitted with a modified AMRAAM antenna along with dramatically improved electronics

https://www.globalsecurity.org/military/systems/munitions/aim-54-variants.htm

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Yeah, this is some of that additional info. The nomenclature is just kinda weird i find. I think its cuz the C+ is both used for the high powered phoenix (D?) and the final product retrofit to the ECCM/Sealed variant?

I though that the SD-10 and the SD-10A were the same missile.
So the SD-10 is different from the SD-10A which is different from the SD-10B?

As far as I can tell the timeline goes like this:

AIM-54A (1972)

Basic Phoenix we already know, exceptional launch ranges (confirmed 100+ nm hit)

AIM-54C [AKA C ECCM/SEALED] (1982)

Improved seeker (solid state, said to be better in beam among other things), internal cooling system, heaters installed, reduced smoke motor, slightly increased range and top speed (mach 5+ capable)

AIM-54C+ [AKA High Power] (1990)

AMRAAM seeker installed, dramatically improved electronics.

So the F-14D would have been the only variant to have C+ access, which allows it to make use of its new radar with MPRF capability.

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the C and C ECCM/Sealed aren’t the same.

Thats the weird part, It looks like the timeline regarding the C goes something like;

C → C ECCM/Sealed → C+ program w/multiple upgrades → designation of C+ added to ECCM/Sealed that got some of the C+ upgrades?

The C+ seems to be the point of nomenclature issues

Who knows, only small amount of seekers were produced for tests and then project was cancelled.

Mythics forecast source is wildly inaccurate and most discussion of AIM-54C is not factual as that missile is still classified. Information for XAIM-54 / X-AAM N-11 indicates most performance metrics for AIM-54A are severely understated.

To add, pilot experience agrees with this. In practice, the Navy’s own charts and manuals underestimated the Phoenix’s performance.

Spoiler

https://youtu.be/YJW5As4Os4U?si=pfkpMCm1D8o8HcGM

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