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Strategic: Strike

Trident II (D-5)

Larger and with longer range than Trident I, the Trident II was first tested aboard a submarine in March 1989 and deployed in 1990.

General - Purpose Bombs

The MK-80 series general-purpose bomb family was created in the late 1940s and has been the standard airlaunched bomb for the services ever since. The general purpose bomb family is designed to provide blast and fragmentation effects and is used extensively in a number of configurations including laser-guided bombs, joint direct attack munitions (JDAM) and air-delivered mining applications. The unguided versions of the general-purpose bomb can also be delivered in freefall or delayed modes depending upon mission requirements. There were three basic versions of these bombs in inventory for many years:

* 2,500 pound MK 82/BLU 111

* 1,000 pound MK 83/BLU 110

* 2,000 pound MK 84/BLU 117

The remaining versions of the MK 80 series bombs are being converted from the MK designation to the bomb live unit (BLU) designation during new production. T e Navy's MK 80 series bombs remaining in inventory are filled with H-6 high explosive; the newer BLU series bombs incorporate a PBXN-109 explosive that provides less sensitive characteristics and is considered safer to handle and stow.

The Navy's newest member to the BLU series is the BLU-126 low-collateral warhead. It is identical to the BLU-111 with the exception of the amount of PBXN-109 explosive filler. The aft end of the BLU-126 bomb is packed with approximately 27 pounds of explosive filler with the remainder of the bomb being filled with inert material.

Laser-Guided Bomb Kits (LGB)

LGBs were developed to enhance the terminal accuracy of air-launched, general-purpose bombs and entered the feet's inventory in 1968. An LGB kit consists of a computer control group (CCG) and air foil group (AFG) normally attached to a general-purpose bomb to form an LGB.

The Dual Mode Laser Guided kit enhances existing LGB kits by adding global positioning system/inertial navigation system (GPS/INS) capabilities. Like the LGB it consists of a CCG and an AFG.

Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM)

JDAM kits were jointly developed with the U.S. Air Force to provide increased accuracy for air-launched bombs. The JDAM kit consists of a tail kit and mid-body strakes attached to a general purpose or penetrator bomb body - 500, 1,000 and 2,000 pounds.

Guidance and control is provided by a GPS/INS.

Laser Joint Direct Attack Munition (LJDAM)

LJDAM is a precision guided bomb, consisting of a modular laser sensor integrated with inventory JDAM kits to provide moving target kill capability. The laser sensor kit is field-installed on the 500-pound version of JDAM.

Joint Stand-off Weapon (JSOW)

The JSOW is an air-launched "drop-and-forget" weapon that is capable of approximately 60 nautical mile stand-off ranges. JSOW variants provide the fleet with a strike interdiction capability against soft and hardened targets such as fixed and relocatable air defense elements, parked aircraft, command and control facilities, light combat vehicles, industrial elements, bunkers, personnel and, beginning in FY10, enemy surface ships.

Currently, two variants of JSOW are in the fleet: AGM-154A, which uses GPS/INS guidance and general purpose submunitions, and AGM-154C, which adds a terminal imaging infrared seeker and a two-stage Broach warhead.

HARM (High-Speed Anti-Radar Missile)

HARM is the standard anti-radar missile in the U.S. inventory. It's used as both a strike-protection and antiship weapon. First deployed aboard USS Kitty Hawk (CV 63) in January 1984, it was first used in combat in April 1986 during raids on Libya.

Harpoon/Stand-Off Land Attack Missile - Expanded Response (SLAM-ER) The Harpoon/SLAM-ER missiles are derivatives from the original Harpoon, that was conceived in 1965.


The Harpoon Block 1C is an air or surface-launched, anti-ship, all-weather cruise missile which employs an autonomous active radar seeker to attack a wide variety of surface ship targets from standoff ranges. The Harpoon, which entered service in 1977, is currently carried by F/A-18 and P-3C aircraft as well as a portion of the DDG 51 and CG 47 surface ship classes for the U.S. Navy.

Numerous air, surface and submarine platforms currently deploy Harpoon for 27 foreign military sales (FMS) international customers. Harpoon Block III is a retrofit kit currently under development to add a Network Enabled Weapon (NEW) datalink and GPS guidance to provide target selectivity to the combat proven Harpoon missile.


SLAM-ER is an upgrade to the SLAM missile which adds Tomahawk derivative planar wings to increase flight range to more than 150 nautical miles and a titanium warhead for increased hardened target penetration. SLAM-ER also includes software improvements which allow the pilot to precisely select a target impact point from a cockpit display of the infrared image of the target. Improved mission planning is provided to simplify and shorten operator mission planning timelines.

SLAM-ER is used to attack critical nodes of high value fixed and relocatable land targets as well as surface ship targets underway or pierside. SLAM-ER is currently deployed from F/A-18 and P-3C aircraft and is planned for the P-8A aircraft. SLAM-ER is currently in production for FMS international customers.


The Maverick is a short-range, air-to-surface, tactical missile. The version used by the Navy carries a warhead designed to penetrate large, hard targets. First deployed in August 1972.

Tomahawk Cruise Missile

An all-weather, ship-or submarine-launched, cruise missile, Tomahawks have proven to be highly survivable weapons due to their low radar detectability and terrain/wave-skimming flight. It was first deployed in 1986.

The Tomahawk Land-Attack Missile (TLAM) is an all-weather subsonic cruise missile that can be fired from surface or submarine launch platforms. The Tomahawk carries a nuclear or conventional payload. The conventional, land-attack, unitary variant carries a 1,000-pound-class warhead (TLAM-C) while the submunitions dispenser variant carries 166 combined-effects bomblets (TLAM-D). The Block III version incorporates engine improvements, an insensitive extended range warhead, time-of-arrival control and navigation capability using an improved Digital Scene Matching Area Correlator and GPS - which can significantly reduce mission-planning time and increase navigation and terminal accuracy.

The Tomahawk was used operationally for the first time during Operation Desert Storm. Tomahawks were fred against targets in Afghanistan in October 2001 during Operation Enduring Freedom. During Operation Iraqi Freedom in March 2003, 802 Tomahawks were fired against Iraq.

Tomahawk Block IV (TLAM-E) or "Tactical Tomahawk," has capability enhancements that include (a) increased flexibility using two-way satellite communications to reprogram the missile in-flight to a new aimpoint or preplanned mission, send a new mission to the missile en route to a new target and missile health and status messages during the flight; (b) increased responsiveness with faster launch timelines, mission-planning capability aboard the launch platform, loiter capability in the area of emerging targets, the ability to provide battle-damage indication in the target area and the capability to provide a single-frame image of the target or other area of interest along the missile flight path; and (c) improved affordability: Full-rate production of the Tactical Tomahawk began in July 2004.

Anti-Air Warfare (AAW) Aircraft Guns M-61-A1

This 20mm Gatling gun, which also forms the basis for the Phalanx Close-In Weapons System is mounted aboard the F/A-18 Hornet.

Surface-To-Air Missiles

RIM-116 Rolling Airframe Missile (RAM)

Developed jointly with the Federal Republic of Germany, RAM provides ships with a low-cost, self-defense system against anti-ship missiles and asymmetric air and surface threats.

Standard Missile

Standard Missile 2 (SM-2) is the Navy's primary surface-to-air defense weapon. It is an integral part of the Aegis Weapons System aboard Ticonderoga and Arleigh Burke-class destroyers SM-2 MR (Block III, IIIA, IIIB).

Air-To-Air Missiles

Advanced, Medium-Range, Air-to-Air Missile (AMRAAM)

An all-weather, all-environment, radar-guided missile developed as a follow-on to the Sparrow missile series. AMRAAM is smaller, faster, lighter and has improved capabilities against very low-altitude and high-altitude targets in an electronic countermeasure environment. Its active radar, in conjunction with an inertial reference unit and microcomputer system, makes the missile less dependent on the aircraft fire control system enabling the pilot to aim and fire several missiles at multiple targets.

The AMRAAM is a result of a joint U.S. Navy and U.S. Air Force development effort and is in service with numerous NATO and Allied countries. The AMRAAM was deployed in September 1991 and is carried on the F/A-18 Hornet.

AIM-54 Phoenix Missile

The Phoenix missile is the Navy's only long-range, air-to- air missile. The missile is designed for use in all-weather and heavy jamming environments. The improved Phoenix, the AIM-54C, can better counter projected threats from tactical aircraft and cruise missiles.

Sparrow/Sea Sparrow

A highly-maneuverable, all-weather, beyond-visual-range, semi-active radar homing air-to-air missile used by the United States, NATO and other allied forces. Current air-to-air versions are carried on the F/A-18 aircraft.

In a shipboard version, the Sea Sparrow, provides U.S. Navy and NATO ships with an effective, anti-air weapon. First deployed in 1958, numerous models and upgrades have occurred to the Sparrow missile family.

Evolved Sea Sparrow Missiles (ESSM)

The first ESSM was delivered to the fleet in late 2002. The new missile provides the primary air defense for capital ships of 10 nations participating in the program.



The Sidewinder is a short-range, infra-red, visual range air-to-air missile used by the United States, NATO and other allied nations. The missile has been through a number of modernizations and the current fleet weapon is the AIM-9M. The missile is an all-aspect, heat-seeking missile with improved capabilities against countermeasures.

A major modification to the AIM-9M Sidewinder is the AIM-9X. The AIM-9X is a joint U.S. Navy and U.S. Air Force program that upgrades the missile with a staring focal plan array in the seeker, and extremely agile airframe and state-of-the-art signal processors resulting in enhanced target acquisition, missile kinematics and improved infrared counter-countermeasure capabilities.

The missile's high, off-bore sight capability can be coupled to a helmet-mounted cueing system that will revolutionize the way that air-to-air missiles are employed. The Sidewinder is currently deployed on the F/A-18, AV-8 and AH-1 aircraft.

Ship board Guns

MK 45 - 5-inch 54/ 62 caliber gun

This fully automatic naval gun provides surface combatants accurate naval, gunfire against fast, highly-maneuverable, surface targets, air threats and shore batteries during amphibious operations.

MK 38 - 25 mm machine gun system

This single-barrel, air-cooled, heavy machine gun is effective up to 2,000 yards (Mod 2). The stabilized Mod 2 was developed in 2003 to improve ship self-defense and meet the needs of ships throughout the fleet, especially those operating in the Arabian Gulf.

MK 75 - 76mm/62 caliber, 3-inch gun

Best suited for use aboard smaller combat vessels, the MK 75 features rapid fire capability with low manning requirements. The gun was approved for fleet use in 1975 and was first deployed aboard USS Oliver Hazard Perry (FFG 7) in 1978.

Phalanx Close-In Weapons System (CIWS)

The Phalanx CIWS combines a 20mm Gatling gun with search and tracking radar to provide surface ships with terminal defense against anti-ship missiles. The system underwent operational tests and evaluation aboard USS Bigelow (DD 942) in 1977 and went into production in 1978 with the first systems installed aboard USS Coral Sea (CV 43) in 1980.

Phalanx automatically detects, tracks, and engages air warfare threats while the Block 1B's man-in-the-loop system counters emerging littoral warfare threats.

Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Torpedoes

MK 46

The MK 46 Mod 5A(S) torpedo achieved its initial operational capability and was introduced into the fleet in 1979. It can be launched from fixed and rotary wing aircraft and surface combatants VLA and torpedo tubes. Full-up MK 46 torpedoes are no longer being produced. In 1987, a major upgrade program enhanced the performance of the MK 46 Mod 5A(S) in shallow water.

A service life extension program was initiated in 1992 to extend the life of the MK 46 Mod 5A(S), convert it to the MK 46 Mod 5A(SW), and to provide additional shallow water and bottom avoidance modes. The MK 46 Mod 5A(SW) was introduced to the fleet in 1996.

MK 48

The MK 48 heavyweight torpedo is used solely by submarines and is employed as the primary ASW and anti-surface ship weapon aboard attack, ballistic missile and guided missile submarines. Developed by the Applied Research Laboratory, Pennsylvania State University and Westinghouse Electric Corporation, Baltimore, the MK 48 and its subsequent variants have been in service with the Navy since 1972.

Its latest version, MK 48 Mod 7 Common Broad Advanced Sonar System torpedo is optimized for both deep and littoral waters and has advanced counter-countermeasure capabilities.

MK 50

The MK 50 is a highly capable undersea weapon for U.S. Navy aircraft and surface ships. It is an advanced lightweight digital torpedo designed for use against faster, deeper-diving and more sophisticated submarines.

The stored chemical energy propulsion system develops full power at all depths and is capable of multi-speed operations required by the tactical situation. Although full-up torpedoes have not been produced since 1993, the Block I software upgrade program has enhanced the MK 50's shallow water and countermeasure capability.

MK 54

The MK 54 MAKO lightweight torpedo integrates existing torpedo hardware and software from the MK 46, MK 50 and MK 48 with state-of-the-art commercial-off the-shelf digital signal processing technology. It incorporates an advanced guidance and control section and tactical software improvements to significantly increase shallow water counter-countermeasure capability at reduced lifecycle costs.


MK 67 Submarine Launched Mobile Mine (SLMM)

Based on the MK 37 torpedo, the SLMM is a submarine-deployed mine used for clandestine mining in hostile environments. The SLMM is a shallow water mine consisting basically of a modified MK 37 torpedo.


The Quickstrike is a family of shallow water, aircraft-laid mines. The MK 65 mine is a 2,000 pound mine with a specially designed thin-walled casing. Other Quickstrike versions (MK 62, MK 63) are converted general purpose bombs of the 500 pound and 1,000 pound sizes.

Sources: Naval Sea Systems Command and Naval Air Systems Command)
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Publication:All Hands
Article Type:List
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Jan 1, 2011
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