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New Boomerang Missile Can Destroy Enemy Fighters Behind Combat Jets

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posted on Mar, 10 2009 @ 10:15 PM

In a world first for an Air Force and an infra-red guided missile, Air Combat Group (ACG) of the Royal Australian Air Force has successfully carried out the first in-service 'Lock After Launch' firing of an ASRAAM (Advanced short-range air-to-air missile) at a target located behind the wing-line of the "shooter" aircraft. The firing was conducted from an F/A-18 fighter aircraft, at low level and typical fighter speed, at a target located behind the fighter at a range in excess of 5km. The result was a direct hit on the target.

The engagement simulated a "chase down" situation by an enemy fighter and successfully demonstrated the potential for an all-round self protection capability with the ASRAAM. This capability is inherent on all platforms that provide pre-launch 'over the shoulder' designation information such as F/A-18, Eurofighter Typhoon and F-35 JSF.

Has this been done before in air combat? I would be very surprised if this hasn't been attempted before with another weapons system?

What do you think?

[edit on 3/10/2009 by clay2 baraka]

posted on Mar, 10 2009 @ 10:47 PM
There are several newer missiles that have a lock after launch capability. This gives a lot more flexibility during combat. As far as I know none of them have been used in anything but tests to date and haven't been used in actual combat.

posted on Mar, 10 2009 @ 11:48 PM
reply to post by clay2 baraka


BRILLIANT name for this weapon. God forbid they would have called it an arseRAAM. This has got to be the funniest thing I have read all day. Nice thread.

posted on Mar, 10 2009 @ 11:59 PM
I wonder if lock-after-launch missiles will or have already made traditional dog fighting obsolete?

Will aerial combat eventually just consist of fighters unloading their missile payloads before bugging out?

posted on Mar, 11 2009 @ 01:12 AM
reply to post by clay2 baraka

That's mostly what combat is anymore. Most fighters are designed for BVR fighting, which is Beyond Visual Range, where they fire missiles like the AMRAAM or other long range missiles. WVR combat (Within Visual Range) is not gone, but it's much harder to get to WVR with all the new missiles, and stealth out there.

The claim that dogfighting days are dead has been made before, and usually found to be false the hard way. During Vietnam, missiles were supposed to take over fights, so planes didn't even have guns built into them. A huge number of missiles either tracked the sun (IFR missiles) or dropped off the rails and just kept falling (radar guided). Many pilots got into a situation where a gun would have gotten them kills, but there was nothing they could do. The F-4 Phantom had a gun pod that they would hang under the belly position until the E model came along.

posted on Mar, 11 2009 @ 01:18 AM
I have to do some digging but the closest thing I recall to this concept was a Soviet desing (I really want to say the Mig-27) that had two rearward firing missiles.

posted on Mar, 11 2009 @ 01:43 AM
reply to post by FredT

It was a derivative of the R-73, they tested it on an SU-27. I'll try to find more information on it later.

posted on Mar, 11 2009 @ 11:57 AM

Originally posted by Zaphod58
WVR combat (Within Visual Range) is not gone, but it's much harder to get to WVR with all the new missiles, and stealth out there.

Eventually stealth is going to spread to other air forces, whether by electronic means or design. In that situation the possibility of someone going the distance will increase. One good thing is that there are F-22's which have been doing this with one another, so we wont be completely surprised.

posted on Mar, 11 2009 @ 12:05 PM
This seems a bit pointless, modern A2A combat is about who can identify, rotate and shoot the quickest. If you have a bandit in the control position on you then you ought to be reaching for the eject handle with one hand and the chaff/flares with the other and not trying to toggle one of these things.

The only time it might be effective is in a gunfight and even then your bandit will probably be too close to engage with one of these arseRAAMS. Just another quirk of the RAAF I guess like ordering the overrated F-22 when they could have got a whole bunch of perfectly capable and combat proven F-16's.

The mind boggles.

posted on Mar, 11 2009 @ 01:51 PM
I don't think this is a new capability - like FredT I was under the impression that the Su-30/Vympel R-73 has had this capability for some time.

It's only a "new" capability in the West.

posted on Mar, 11 2009 @ 01:58 PM

Are you a ham-fisted goon who lacks situational awareness and is just happy to walk away from each hop with all the big pieces still on the jet? Well, if so, the Royal Australian Air Force wants you!


Here's a new bumper sticker idea (this year's "My other car is an F-18"): "My ASRAAM missile hides the fact that I'm a grape."

That's all quite funny, bit harsh though, I never heard of the Auzzy fighter jocks being all that bad.

As regards the missile that all cool and all, but what are the chances of this thing locking onto another aircraft? Blowing your wing man out the sky will not win you any points

posted on Mar, 11 2009 @ 03:18 PM
the f 22 has the capability to fire a missile at any target in a 360 degree area witch is also the fire and forget this is a weapon system to have it on most aircraft but the f 22 comes standard with the capability

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