Ukrainian army soldiers undergo training on NASAMS air defense systems expected from US
On September 16, the Pentagon announced that the first two NASAMS air defense batteries will arrive in Ukraine within the next two months. Oleksii Reznikov, the Minister of Defense of Ukraine, advertised this in a comment to Hromadske TV and Babel media, mil.in.ua website reports. He emphasized that Ukraine has not yet received these air defense systems.
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Launch of a Raytheon AMRAAM anti-aircraft guided missile from a NASAMS launcher (Picture source: Ministry of Defense of Hungary)
The information was spread by certain media with reference to an interview of President Volodymyr Zelensky broadcasted on September 25. Reznikov said that misunderstanding regarding President’s interview could happen due to translation difficulties. President Zelensky meant that a fundamental tectonic shift has occurred: a decision was made to provide Ukraine with NASAMS systems. But the future Ukrainian operators are still undergoing training on these complex systems. ”The same applies to the German Iris-T air defense systems”, Reznikov said, before adding that deliveries of NASAMS systems to Ukraine will take place on schedule.
The U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) on August 26, 2022, announced a $182,295,333 firm-fixed-price contract for the procurement of National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile Systems (NASAMS) for Ukraine. During a press conference of the DoD on September 16, Pentagon Press Secretary Air Force Brigadier General Pat Ryder announced that two NASAMS were expected to be delivered to Ukraine in the next two months.
The NASAMS (Norwegian Advanced Surface to Air Missile System) is designed and manufactured by the Norwegian company Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace teamed up with Raytheon from the United States for the missile. Since its introduction in Norway in 2015, another four countries in NATO and the EU have acquired NASAMS. It can identify, engage and destroy threats, including enemy aircraft, unmanned aerial vehicles, and cruise missiles
A standard NASAMS unit has a modular design including a command post called FDC Fire Distribution Center, an active 3D radar AN/MPQ64F1 Sentinel, a passive electro-optic and infra-red sensor, and a number of missile canister launchers with AMRAAM missiles. Usually, four NASAMS units are connected in a battalion network.
The missile of the NASAMS can engage 72 targets simultaneously in active and passive modes. The primary missile of the system is AIM-120 AMRAAM. The missile is able to hit targets at a range of up to 40 km and at an altitude of up to 14 km. The NASAMS can also fire the AIM-9X Sidewinder Block II short-range missile. It can be deployed to perform air-to-air engagements, surface-attack, and surface-launch missions without the need for modifications.
The missile of the NASAMS can engage 72 targets simultaneously in active and passive modes. The primary missile of the system is AIM-120 (AIM-9X Block 11) AMRAAM (Picture source: Army Recognition)