Artillery: Naval Strike Missile Defends Poland


January 6, 2009: The Norwegian firm Kongsberg has sold its Naval Strike Missile (NSM) to Poland for use in a coastal defense system. The 900 pound NSM has a 275 pound warhead and a range of 185 kilometers. NSM uses GPS and inertial guidance systems, as well as heat imaging system (and a database of likely targets) for picking out and hitting the intended target. Kongsberg is providing a radar and control system, so that several batteries of the missiles may coordinate their attacks.

Meanwhile, Kongsberg teamed with an American firm to jointly developed a "Joint Strike Missile" (JSM) designed to be launched from the internal bomb bay of the F-35 fighter. The half ton weapon, with a 250 kilometer range, is based on the NSM. Adapting this weapon for air launch attracted the attention of U.S. firm Lockheed Martin, and the U.S. Department of Defense. The JSM uses the NSM guidance system to hit moving targets, like ships. The JSM thus becomes a very useful weapon for nations adopting the F-35. The JSM is also superior to the heavier Harpoon, which has become a standard anti-ship missile in many navies. The JSM has other competition, like the Harpoon variant, SLAM-ER, but at the moment no one weapon has a lock on future anti-ship missiles.