Naval Strike Missile

The Naval Strike Missile (NSM) is an anti-ship and land-attack missile developed by the Norwegian company Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace (KDA).

Naval Strike Missile
Typelittoral/open sea anti-ship/land attack cruise missile
Place of originNorway
Service history
In serviceSince 2012[1]
Used byNorway
United States
Production history
ManufacturerKongsberg Defence & Aerospace
Mass410 kg (900 lb)
Length3.95 m (13.0 ft)
Warhead125 kg (276 lb) HE blast-fragmentation
Programmable fuze

EngineSolid fuel rocket booster, Microturbo TRI 40 turbojet
NSM 185 km (115 mi; 100 nmi)+ (profile dependent)
JSM 185 km (115 mi; 100 nmi)+ low-low-low profile, 555 km (345 mi; 300 nmi)+ hi-hi-low profile
Flight altitudeSea skimming optional
SpeedHigh subsonic
Inertial, GPS, terrain-reference navigation, imaging infrared homing, target database
Naval ships, land-based vehicles

The original Norwegian name was Nytt sjømålsmissil (literally New sea target missile, indicating that it is the successor of the Penguin missile); the English marketing name Naval Strike Missile was adopted later.


The Naval Strike Missile's initial serial production contract was signed in June 2007.[2] It has been chosen by the Royal Norwegian Navy for its new Fridtjof Nansen class frigates and Skjold class patrol boats. In December 2008 the NSM was selected by the Polish Navy, which ordered total 50 land-based missiles (including 2 for testing) under deals from 2008 and 2011, with delivery planned for 2013–2016.[3][4][5] The final milestone was completed in June 2011 with tests at Point Mugu.[6] On 12 April 2011, the Norwegian Ministry of Defense announced phase 2 of development.[7]

On Wednesday, October 10, 2012, the Royal Norwegian Navy marked history by firing an NSM for the first time. The vessel in question was the HNoMS Glimt, Skjold class patrol boat.[8] On Wednesday, June 5, 2013, the Royal Norwegian Navy for the first time test fired an NSM missile carrying a live warhead against a target vessel. The decommissioned Oslo class frigate HNoMS Trondheim was hit and the munition functioned as intended.[9][10]

In June 2013 Poland completed the Coastal Missile Division equipped with 12 NSM and 23 vehicles on Jelcz chassis (inc. six launchers, two TRS-15C radars, six fire control and three command vehicles).[11] Ultimately, the Coastal Missile Division will be equipped with 12 launchers carrying four missiles each for a total of 48 missiles. In December 2014 Poland ordered a second batch of launchers and missiles to equip a Naval Strike Missile battalion.[12]

In late July 2014, the U.S. Navy confirmed that the NSM would be tested aboard the littoral combat ship USS Coronado (LCS-4).[13] The test occurred successfully on 24 September 2014.[14] Kongsberg and Raytheon teamed to pitch the NSM to equip the LCS as its over-the-horizon anti-ship missile in 2015.[15] By May 2017, the extended-range Boeing RGM-84 Harpoon and Lockheed Martin LRASM had been withdrawn from the Navy's Over-the-Horizon Weapon System (OTH-WS) competition, leaving the NSM as the only remaining contender.[16] On 31 May 2018, the Navy officially selected the NSM to serve as the LCS' OTH anti-ship weapon. The $14.8 million initial contract award to Raytheon calls for the delivery of Kongsberg-designed "encanistered missiles loaded into launching mechanisms; and a single fire control suite,” and buys about a dozen missiles; the entire contract value could grow to $847.6 million if all contract options are exercised.[17] The Navy plans to deploy the NSM in late 2019.[18]

During RIMPAC 2014 the frigate Fridtjof Nansen made a successful firing of the NSM during a SINKEX, with the missile impacting and detonating as designed.[19]

In the LIMA exhibition 2015, Malaysia announced that the Naval Strike Missile had won the contract to fulfil the Royal Malaysian Navy's Maharaja Lela-class's anti-ship missile requirement.[20]

In February 2017, the Norwegian government announced that the German Navy will acquire "a significant amount" of Naval Strike Missiles under a deal valued at "more than 10 billion NOK".[21]

During RIMPAC 2018, USARPAC will fire a Naval Strike Missile from the shore to sink a ship.[22]

In October 2019 the USS Gabrielle Giffords fired off a Naval Strike Missile at a surplus US Navy frigate, USS Ford (FFG-54), which was towed close to Guam, in the Pacific, to act as a target in an exercise called SINKEX.

Design and features

The state-of-the-art design and use of composite materials is meant to give the missile sophisticated stealth capabilities. The missile will weigh slightly more than 400 kg (880 lb) and have a range of more than 185 km (100 nm). NSM is designed for littoral waters ("brown water") as well as for open sea ("green and blue water") scenarios. The usage of a high strength titanium alloy blast/fragmentation warhead from TDW is in line with the modern lightweight design and features insensitive high-explosive. Warhead initiation is by a void-sensing Programmable Intelligent Multi-Purpose Fuze designed to optimise effect against hard targets.[23]

Like its Penguin predecessor, NSM is able to fly over and around landmasses, travel in sea skim mode, and then make random manoeuvres in the terminal phase, making it harder to stop by enemy countermeasures. While the Penguin is a yaw-to-turn missile, NSM is based on bank-to-turn flight (see Yaw (flight) and flight control). In 2016, it was confirmed by the Royal Norwegian Navy that NSM also can attack land targets. [24]

The target selection technology provides NSM with a capacity for independent detection, recognition, and discrimination of targets at sea or on the coast. This is possible by the combination of an imaging infrared (IIR) seeker and an onboard target database. NSM is able to navigate by GPS, inertial and terrain reference systems.

After being launched into the air by a solid rocket booster which is jettisoned upon burning out, the missile is propelled to its target in high subsonic speed by a turbojet sustainer engine—leaving the 125 kg multi-purpose blast/fragmentation warhead to do its work, which in case of a ship target means impacting the ship at or near the water line.

An NSM coastal battery consists of three missile launch vehicles, one battery command vehicle, three combat command vehicles, one mobile communication center, one mobile radar vehicle with TRS-15C radar, one transport and loading vehicle, and one mobile workshop vehicle. Each MLV carries 4 missiles and can be connected to the CCV by optical fiber or radio up to 10 km (6.2 mi) away; up to 6 launchers with 24 missiles can be netted together at once.[25] When installed on ships, NSMs can be deck-mounted in packs of one, two, three, four, or six launchers. Total installation weight, including electronics and cabling, is 8,600 lb (3,900 kg) for four launchers, 17,000 lb (7,700 kg) for eight launchers, and 26,000 lb (12,000 kg) for 12 launchers.[26]


Japan is i a potential future operators

Current operators

 United States

Future operators


Joint Strike Missile

A multi-role version of the NSM is in development. This missile is called Joint Strike Missile (JSM) and will feature an option for ground strike and a two-way communications line, so that the missile can communicate with the central control room or other missiles in the air. This missile will be integrated with the Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II. Studies have shown that the F-35 would be able to carry two of these in its internal bays, while additional missiles could be carried externally.

Lockheed Martin and Kongsberg signed a joint-marketing agreement for this air-launched version of the NSM, as well as an agreement committing both parties to integrating the JSM on the F-35 platform.[31][32] The project is funded by Norway and Australia.[33] Kongsberg signed a contract for the first phase of development of the JSM in April, 2009, which is scheduled for completion within 18 months.[34] The JSM will have multicore computers running Integrity real-time operating system from Green Hills Software.[35]

Improved features for the Joint Strike Missile include:

  • Shape changed to fit in F-35 internal bay[36]
  • Ability to attack sea and land based targets
  • Aerial launch platform (F-35)
  • Improved range over NSM, estimates include 150 nmi (170 mi; 280 km)[36] to >100 nmi low-low-low or > 300 nmi (350 mi; 560 km) hi-hi-low flight profiles[26]
  • Long-term, production start in 2013

On 15 July 2014, Kongsberg and Raytheon announced that they had formed a teaming agreement to offer the JSM to the United States Navy for their Offensive Anti-Surface Warfare (OASuW) requirement;[37] Raytheon would produce JSMs for the American market.[38] The Navy plans to begin a competition for the OASuW requirement in 2017, which will likely pit the Kongsberg/Raytheon JSM against the Lockheed Martin Long Range Anti-Ship Missile (LRASM).[39]

Kongsberg is studying methods to deploy the JSM from Norway's submarines,[40] and found shaping the missile to fit into the F-35's confined bomb-bay also enabled it to fit in the Mark 41 Vertical Launching System. A VL-JSM could also compete with the Lockheed LRASM for the U.S. Navy's OASuW Increment 2 for a ship-launched anti-ship missile.[41]

Australia expressed interest in buying the JSM in June 2014 to equip their F-35 fighters. The missile has also been pitched to South Korea and Japan, and Kongsberg is expected to attempt to make sales to other countries that have ordered the F-35A. The JSM is expected to become fully operational in 2025.[42] Development is aimed to be completed in 2017 and achievement of initial operational capability (IOC) is expected in 2021 with the release of the F-35's Block 4 software. Fit checks have been performed on the external hardpoints of all F-35 variants, and internally on the F-35A and C-models. Countries that operate other aircraft have expressed interest in the JSM, and fit checks have also been performed on the F-15 Eagle and F/A-18 Hornet, but integration on other platforms will not be conducted without a confirmed customer.[43]

On 15 September 2015 the Australian government signed an agreement to finance the development of a passive radio frequency seeker to complement the existing infrared target seeker.[44]

In November 2015, an F-16 Falcon successfully completed live-fire testing of the JSM at the Utah Test and Training Range.[45][46]

In March 2019, Kongsberg was awarded a contract to supply the Japan Air Self-Defense Force with initial deliveries of the joint strike missile.[47]

See also


  1. NAVAL STRIKE MISSILE – Dette er Norges nye storselger – Teknisk Ukeblad, 11 June 2012
  2. Contract for serial production of the new Naval Strike Missile – KDA press release, 29 June 2007
  3. article Archived 2012-06-20 at the Wayback Machine, 28 December 2011 – (in Polish)
  4. Gazeta Wyborcza article, 23 December 2008 – (in Polish)
  5. "Defense & Security Intelligence & Analysis: IHS Jane's – IHS". Retrieved 8 October 2015.
  6. "Kongsberg's NSM Naval Strike Missile Completes Final Milestone". Retrieved 8 October 2015.
  7. "Development stage two, Joint Strike Missile.", 4 December 2011. Retrieved: 3 April 2012.
  8. "Naval Open Source INTelligence". Naval Open Source INTelligence. Retrieved 8 October 2015.
  9. "Her sprenger Forsvaret sitt eget skip". Retrieved 8 October 2015.
  10. Ukompletowanie NDR. (in Polish)
  11. "Poland orders its second NSM battalion". Archived from the original on 31 December 2014.
  12. LCS to conduct test of Norwegian missile –, 24 July 2014
  13. Norwegian Missile Test On Littoral Combat Ship Successful –, 24 September 2014
  14. Raytheon and Kongsberg Team to Pitch Stealthy Norwegian Strike Missile for LCS –, 9 April 2015
  15. Lockheed Martin Drops LRASM Out of Littoral Combat Ship/Frigate Missile Competition -, 24 May 2017
  16. Raytheon Awarded LCS Over-the-Horizon Anti-Surface Weapon Contract; Deal Could be Worth $848M. USNI News. 31 May 2018.
  17. The US Navy’s new ship-killer missile slated to make its fleet debut much sooner than expected. Defense News. 24 October 2018.
  18. "Missiles Sink Two Retired Navy Ships". Retrieved 8 October 2015.
  19. Administrator. "Exclusive: Boustead Confirms NSM for the Future Gowind class LCS of the Royal Malaysian Navy". Retrieved 8 October 2015.
  20. Nybø, Katrine (13 February 2017). "Missilsamarbeid med Tyskland gir norsk sal for 10 milliardar" [Missile cooperation with Germany results in Norwegian sale for 10 billion]. NRK (in Norwegian). Oslo: Norsk rikskringkasting AS. Retrieved 13 February 2017.
  21. "Association of the United States Army LANPAC Symposium and Exposition". U.S. Pacific Command. Retrieved 2017-11-27.
  22. "Precision and lethality [ID14D2]". Retrieved 8 October 2015.
  23. {{cite web|url=
  24. Kongsberg showcasing Polish Navy's NSM Coastal Battery vehicles at MSPO 2014 -, 3 September 2014
  25. "Naval and Joint Strike Missiles Update Precision Strike Annual Review (PSAR-14)". Kongsberg. Retrieved 2 November 2016.
  27. "Ukompletowanie NDR – Altair Agencja Lotnicza". Retrieved 8 October 2015.
  29. "Kongsberg NSM to equip Indian MH-60R helicopters | Jane's 360". Retrieved 2019-04-10.
  30. Joint marketing agreement Archived 2007-02-22 at the Wayback Machine – KDA press release, 31 January 2007
  31. Cooperative agreement with Lockheed Martin – KDA press release, 9 June 2009
  32. Norway pushes naval strike missile for JSF – Jane's Defence Weekly, 20 July 2005
  33. Development contract for the Joint Strike Missile – KDA press release, 27 April 2009
  34. Kongsberg selects Integrity for missile programme Archived 2010-09-04 at the Wayback Machine
  35. "Norway pushes for further assurances over JSM integration on F-35". Retrieved 8 October 2015.
  36. Raytheon and Kongsberg team to provide air-launched Offensive Anti-Surface Warfare solutions –, 15 July 2014
  37. CHUTER, ANDREW (15 July 2014). "Raytheon To Produce US Variant of Kongsberg's JSM". Gannett Government Media. Retrieved 15 July 2014.
  38. Arming New Platforms Will Push Up Value Of Missiles Market –, 5 January 2015
  39. "Kongsberg studies JSM for submarine launch". Archived from the original on 26 January 2013. Retrieved 8 October 2015.
  40. "Naval Technology – Kongsberg VL JSM anti-ship missile". 14 January 2015. Retrieved 14 January 2015.
  41. Norway’s Joint Strike Missile Tempts Aussies; Raytheon Likes It Too –, 16 July 2014
  42. Kongsberg plans JSM flight tests in 2015 –, 25 September 2014
  43. "Australia to Finance the Development of a New Seeker for Kongsberg's Joint Strike Missile". 28 September 2015. Retrieved 28 September 2015.
  44. Franz-Stefan Gady. "F-35's Joint Strike Missile Successfully Completes Flight Test in US". The Diplomat. Retrieved 9 April 2016.
  45. F-35’s Joint Strike Missile Completes Flight Test -, 11 November 2015
  46. Dominguez, Gabriel; Takahashi, Kosuke (12 March 2019). "Kongsberg awarded contract to supply JSMs for Japanese F-35s". Jane's 360. London, Tokyo. Archived from the original on 12 March 2019. Retrieved 12 March 2019.
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