posted on Oct, 8 2005 @ 09:30 AM
. The AMRAAM P3I (Pre-Planned Product Improvement) program led to the AIM-120C, first delivered in 1996. The major new feature of the basic AIM-120C
(P3I Phase 1) are the clipped wings and fins. Although this feature was introduced to allow carriage in the internal weapons bays of the F/A-22
Raptor, the -120C can also be used from other AMRAAM-capable aircraft. The guidance unit of the AIM-120C is upgraded to WGU-44/B standard. The first
P3I Phase 2 missile is the AIM-120C-4 (first delivered in 1999), which has an improved WDU-41/B warhead. The AIM-120C-5 is a C-4 with a slightly
larger motor in the new WPU-16/B propulsion section and a new shorter WCU-28/B control section with compressed electronics and ECCM upgrades.
Deliveries of the AIM-120C-5 began in July 2000. The current production version of AMRAAM is the AIM-120C-6, which features an updated TDD (Target
Detection Device). The AIM-120C-7 (P3I Phase 3), development of which has begun in 1998, incorporates improved ECCM with jamming detection, an
upgraded seeker, and longer range. The latter feature was specifically requested by the U.S. Navy to get a (somewhat) suitable replacement for the
AIM-54 Phoenix very-long range missile, which will be retired together with the F-14D Tomcat around 2007. The AIM-120C-7 was successfully tested
against combat-realistic targets in August and September 2003, and IOC is currently planned for 2004. Equivalent to the -120A/B, there are also
CATM-120C and JAIM-120C non-tactical variants of the AIM-120C. The designation AIM-120D refers to a projected version with a two-way data link, more
accurate navigation, an expanded no-escape envelope and a 50% increase in range. The AIM-120D is a joint USAF/USN project, and current plans call for
an IOC on the F/A-18E/F in FY2008. """"""""
More than 12000 AIM-120 missiles of all versions have been built so far, including a significant amount for non-U.S. customers. The AMRAAM can be
carried by all current U.S. fighter aircraft (F-14D, F-15, F-16, F/A-18, F/A-22), and is launched from LAU-127/A, -128/A or -129/A CRLs (Common Rail
Launchers), which can also be used for the AIM-9 Sidewinder.
Its just a disapointment that the F-14's are going.
AIM-120D on a F-14 would of been awesome.