The US Navy has successfully completed developmental testing (DT) of the Raytheon-built joint stand-off weapon (JSOW) C-1, the first networked air-launched, anti-ship weapon in the US armoury, at Point Mugu Sea Range, California, US.

During the DT, conducted by Air Test and Evaluation Squadron (VX) 31, the JSOW C-1 hit the QST-35 Seaborne Powered Target (SEPTAR) vessel moving at 15 knots, validating its characteristics to meet design-performance requirements. The tests validated its ability to hand off control of the weapon to a third-party platform and receive in-flight commands.

JSOW C-1 programme manager captain Carl Chebi said that the recent free-flight DT validated the JSOW C-1’s effectiveness against moving maritime targets, providing an essential capability to the anti-surface warfare weapon inventory for the war-fighters. The network-enabled weapon completed the DT phase in late 2011 and will now enter the integrated test phase, following which the programme will undergo operational testing in fiscal year 2013.

The air-to-ground, medium-range, precision-guided glide weapon provides forces with greater effectiveness at sea. The JSOW family of low-cost air-to-ground weapons features an integrated GPS-inertial navigation system and terminal imaging infrared seeker, guiding the weapon to the target. The all-weather, day or night, launch-and-leave JSOW C-1 variant provides upgraded capability to strike moving maritime targets, while the data link allows the aircraft to relay targeting information to the weapon.

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By GlobalData

The weapon will also undergo two additional maritime free-flight tests to refine the data collected and validate its capability against moving maritime targets throughout 2012. It will also undergo land-based regression testing to ensure its updated seeker software retains the legacy JSOW C stationary land target capabilities.

JSOW deputy programme manager commander Samuel Hanaki said: "Integrated testing will provide the additional data points we need to refine the weapon’s capabilities, as well as to assess the JSOW C-1 in an operationally representative environment."