First Joint Strike Missile (JSM) multi-role missile fitted to an F-35

Unveiled on Nov. 29, 2012, the first Joint Strike Missile (JSM) developed for the F-35 by the Norwegian company Kongsberg and the Norwegian Ministry of Defence, was fitted to a test Joint Strike Fighter at Lockheed Martin facility at Ft Worth, Texas, on Feb. 27, 2013.

Even if it can be carried on the external wing pylon (as the fit check proved) the new missile, developed in partnership with the Norwegian Ministry of Defence, and in close cooperation with the Norwegian Defence Research Establishment, is the only powered anti-ship missile that will fit inside the F-35’s weapons bays.

In fact, even if it can be useful to carry four such missiles (2 in the internal bays, 2 on the external pylons) an F-35 carrying the JSM on the underwing pylons would lose much of its stealthiness.

Derived from the Naval Strike Missile (NSM), the anti-ship weapon, featuring long range, low radar cross section and high maneuverability, speed and accuracy, will undergo a Critical Design Review in summer 2013: the CDR will confirm whether the design is mature enough to be able to continue the integration on the F-35.

Image credit: Lockheed Martin

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About David Cenciotti 3635 Articles
David Cenciotti is a freelance journalist based in Rome, Italy. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviationist”, one of the world’s most famous and read military aviation blogs. Since 1996, he has written for major worldwide magazines, including Air Forces Monthly, Combat Aircraft, and many others, covering aviation, defense, war, industry, intelligence, crime and cyberwar. He has reported from the U.S., Europe, Australia and Syria, and flown several combat planes with different air forces. He is a former 2nd Lt. of the Italian Air Force, a private pilot and a graduate in Computer Engineering. He has written four books.