The US Navy has successfully completed the integrated test and evaluation of its joint standoff weapon (JSOW) C-1, at the Point Mugu sea range, California, US.
JSOW is the navy’s first networked, air-launched, anti-ship weapon.
During the final developmental free-flight test, the Raytheon-built product was launched from an F/A-18 Super Hornet and successfully hit the intended moving maritime targets, meeting the required test objectives and paving the way for operational tests in February.
US Navy Precision Strike Weapons (PMA-201) programme manager captain Jaime Engdahl said: "As we pivot to the Pacific, our capability to employ networked precision strike across our kill chains and engage in offensive anti-surface warfare is key to maintaining our strategic dominance in that theatre."
An update to the JSOW-C, C1 integrates a two-way strike common weapon datalink that provides a moving maritime target capability.
It also includes an imaging infrared seeker and an autonomous target system to attack targets with precision accuracy.
As part of the upcoming operational test, which will be led by the navy’s air test and evaluation squadron (VX) 9, the weapon will be assessed so that its capability, suitability and design will be completely responsive to navy crew requirements.
JSOW deputy programme manager Cathy Metz said: "[The] operational test will provide the additional data points we need to further assess the weapon’s capabilities, as well as assess the JSOW C-1 in an operationally representative environment."
Set for delivery in 2016 following a successful completion of operational testing, JSOW C-1 will provide joint force commanders with air-delivered, standoff weapon responses against both moving maritime targets and fixed land targets.
Image: A JSOW C-1 during flight off the California coast. Photo: courtesy of the US Navy.