Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace AS (KONGSBERG) was awarded a contract with the Norwegian Defence Materiel Agency (NDMA) to supply the Joint Strike Missile (JSM) for Norway’s fleet of F-35A Lightning II fighter aircrafts. The contract is valued at MNOK 3,950. The partnership between KONGSBERG, the Norwegian Armed Forces and Norwegian Defence Research Establishment in the definition, development and test of the JSM has been critical factor in developing a missile with such advanced capabilities.
The Joint Strike Missile (JSM) is a fifth-generation stealth air-to-surface missile developed to fulfill the F-35’s anti-surface warfare and land attack capability needs. The missile can be carried internally ensuring the aircraft’s low-signature capabilities, and it has superior performance against well-defended sea- and land targets across long distances.. The Joint Strike Missile is the only fifth-generation cruise missile designed to be launched from the internal weapons bay of the F-35A. JSM will be carried externally on other aircraft. Norway’s Ministry of Defense successfully test-fired the weapon from an F-16 Fighting Falcon in 2018.
“The Joint Strike Missile, as part of the Norwegian F-35 fighter jet, enables the Norwegian Air Force to operate within the challenging and complex environment ensuring the defence of vital national interests. The development of the missile has been ongoing since 2008, and with this contract, completes development and test and enters a full rate production phase. This program secures employment and business for KONGSBERG and our extensive supply chain partners for years to come,” says Eirik Lie, President of Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace.
In 2008, the government of Norway selected the F-35 Lightning II as the replacement for their F-16 fleet. In 2012, Norway increased their program of record quantity by four aircraft and at the same time, accelerated deliveries to begin training pilots and maintainers two years earlier. The Royal Norwegian Air Force operates F-35A variant aircraft that include a drag chute to assist with landing in icy and slick conditions and to reduce landing distance on short airfields. Norway’s F-35 fleet operates out of Ørland Air Base. In addition, a Quick Reaction Alert base is being stood up at Evenes Air Base. Norway’s program of record is for 52 F-35 aircraft.