U.S. Air Force Test and Evaluation Squadron F-15C fighters
U.S. Air Force Test and Evaluation Squadron F-15C fighters

US Air Force Claims Longest Air-to-air Kill with AMRAAM

The U.S. Air Force 28th Test and Evaluation Squadron partnered with the 83d Fighter Weapons Squadron to execute the longest known air-to-air missile shot to date during March 2021. The test took place out of Tyndall AFB, Fla., in conjunction with WSEP East. An F-15C Eagle fired an AIM-120 AMRAAM at a BQM-167 subscale drone, resulting in a “kill” of the aerial target from the furthest distance ever recorded.

“This test effort supported requests from the CAF for “long range kill chain” capabilities,” said Maj. Aaron Osborne, 28th TES. “Key partnerships within the 53rd Wing enabled the expansion of capabilities on a currently fielded weapons system, resulting in warfighters gaining enhanced weapons employment envelopes.”

This test also exercised existing long-range weapons testing infrastructure and laid the ground work for modernizing range capabilities in support of future long-range weapons testing on the Eglin-Gulf Test and Training Range. By partnering with WSEP and the 83d FWS, the 28th TES was able to accomplish this big impact test at a relatively low cost, showcasing innovation and directly supporting the 2018 NDS’s calls for increased lethality and affordability.

The AIM-120 Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air Missile, or AMRAAM, is a beyond-visual-range air-to-air missile (BVRAAM) capable of all-weather day-and-night operations. Designed with a 7-inch (180mm) diameter form-and-fit factor, and employing active transmit-receive radar guidance instead of semi-active receive-only radar guidance. When an AMRAAM missile is launched, NATO pilots use the brevity code Fox Three.