NASAMS 3 anti-aircraft missile systems delivered to Lithuania
The Ministry of National Defense of Lithuania reported that on June 19, 2020, the Lithuanian Air Force air defense division in Šiauliai received NASAMS 3 medium-range anti-aircraft missile system delivered from Norway, acquired by Lithuania by agreement of October 2017. Lithuania became the first foreign (after the Norwegian Armed Forces) recipient of the latest NASAMS AAM version, designated as NASAMS 3. The commissioning of two purchased NASAMS 3 AAM batteries is expected in 2021. Transport and launch containers for Raytheon AIM-120 AMRAAM anti-aircraft guided missiles delivered to the location of the Lithuanian Air Force Air Defense Division from the Kongsberg NASAMS medium-range anti-aircraft missile system 3. Siauliai, 06/19/2020 (c) Lithuanian Ministry of National Defense
Recall that the Ministry of National Defense of Lithuania on October 26, 2017 signed a contract worth € 110 million with the Norwegian Kongsberg group for the purchase of two batteries of the NASAMS 3 anti-aircraft missile system for the Lithuanian armed forces . Each battery will include four transportable launchers and two transportable radar Raytheon AN / MPQ-64F1 Sentinel. According to the Ministry of National Defense of Lithuania, the main elements of the air defense system were rebuilt, but the portable launchers themselves came from the presence of the Norwegian armed forces, with repair and modernization, and are transported on Mercedes-Benz vehicles with an 8x8 wheel arrangement. Other elements of the complex are towed by Mercedes Unimog (4x4) cars.
Lithuanian Air Force Specialists Start Acceptanceand testing NASAMS 3 systems at the Norwegian Kongsberg group in September 2019. Since February 2020, anti-aircraft missile systems manufactured specifically for the Lithuanian Air Force have passed field tests in Norway and are now delivered to Lithuania.
As part of the Lithuanian Air Force, NASAMS 3 air defense systems entered service with the Air Defense Division (Oro gynybos batalionas), forming two new batteries in its composition. Currently, the Lithuanian Air Force Air Defense Division has only the Stinger portable anti-aircraft missile systems (with dual-charge support launchers), RBS-70 and Grom 2.
The NASAMS medium-range air defense system (originally Norwegian Advanced Surface to Air Missile System, now stands for National Advanced Surface to Air Missile System), is jointly developed and manufactured by the Norwegian group Kongsberg (acting as an air defense system integrator) and the American corporation Raytheon. The system is based on the combination of the AN / MPQ-64F1 Sentinel radar and the use of air-to-air missiles with active radar homing of the Raytheon AIM-120 AMRAAM family as missiles. The firing range of the system in the NASAMS 2 configuration is up to 25 km, and the reach in height is up to 14-15 km.
Initially, the NASAMS system was created in the interests of the Norwegian armed forces, and now it is in service in Norway and in small quantities in the USA (where this air defense system has been used since 2004 for Washington air defense). The system has also been acquired by the Netherlands, Spain, Chile, Finland, Oman, Indonesia and Qatar , and is planned for purchase by Hungary , Australia and India .
The main differences between the new NASAMS 3 modification received by Lithuania from the previous version of this NASAMS 2 system areupdated software for the AN / MPQ-64F1 radar and fire control station, as well as the introduction of new control and communication systems with the introduction of IP technologies and the implementation of the concept of "network-centric actions". The contract for the development of a project to upgrade NASAMS 2 air defense systems of the Norwegian Armed Forces to NASAMS 3 in the amount of NOK 300 million ($ 35.1 million) was signed by the Norwegian Ministry of Defense with Kongsberg in January 2013, and a contract of 168 was issued in April 2015 mln kroons ($ 19.8 mln) for the second stage of modernization to NASAMS level 3. Work on upgrading the Norwegian NASAMS 2 air defense systems to NASAMS 3 level was started in 2017 and was planned to be completed before the begining of 2020.