AMRAAM is an active radar-guided, medium-range, supersonic air-to-air missile. It is a joint USAF-Navy follow-on to the AIM-7 Sparrow with launch-and-maneuver capability.
The AIM-120B is an upgraded, reprogrammable variant of the original missile. The AIM-120C incorporates smaller control surfaces for internal carriage on F-22 and F-35 and a high-angle off-boresight (HOBS) launch capability. AIM-120D offers improved range, GPS-assisted guidance, updated data links, and jam resistance, in addition to greater lethality.
Ongoing upgrades will further enhance weapon performance and electronic protection. The second phase of the AIM-120D System Improvement Program (SIP II) completed operational testing and will be fielded in 2020. Cybersecurity testing was concluded in mid-2019.
FY20 funds procure 414 AIM-120D missiles. In 2019, USAF announced it is developing the AIM-260 Joint Air Tactical Missile (JATM) with the Navy to replace AMRAAM with a longer-range, more capable weapon to counter high-end threats.
Contractors: Raytheon; Northrop Grumman; Nammo Group (propulsion).
First Flight: December 1984.
IOC: September 1991; July 2015 (120D).
Active Variants: •AIM-120B. Upgraded, reprogrammable variant of AIM-120A. •AIM-120C. Production variant optimized for the F-22/F-35. •AIM-120D. Latest variant with GPS guidance, improved range, lethality, and jam-resistance.
Dimensions: Span 1.7 ft, length 12 ft, diameter 7 in.
Propulsion: Boost-sustain solid-propellant rocket motor.
Performance: Supersonic, range 20+ miles.
Guidance: Active radar terminal/inertial midcourse.
Warhead: HE blast-fragmentation.
Integration: F-15C/D/E, F-16C/D, F-22A, F-35A.