US approves sale of AGM-88 anti-radiation missiles for Australia's EA-18G Growlers

World Aviation Defense & Security News - Australia
US approves sale of AGM-88 anti-radiation missiles for Australia's EA-18G Growlers
The US State Department has approved a Foreign Military Sale to the Government of Australia for AGM-88B/E Anti-Radiation Missiles worth $137.6 million, the US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) said on April 28, 2017.
Raytheon's AGM-88B HARM missile
(Credit: Raytheon)
According to the DSCA, Australia has requested a possible sale of up to 70 AGM-88B High Speed Anti-Radiation Missiles (HARM) Tactical Missiles; up to 40 AGM-88E Advanced Anti-Radiation Guided Missiles (AARGM) Tactical Missiles; up to 16 CATM-88B HARM Captive Air Training Missiles (CATM); up to 16CATM-88E AARGM CATM; up to 25 AGM-88B Control Sections; up to 25 AGM-88B Guidance Sections; up to 20 AGM-88E Control Sections; up to 20 AGM-88E Guidance Sections; up to 48 Telemetry/Flight Termination Systems; U.S. Government and contractor engineering, technical and logistics support services; and other associated support equipment and services. The total estimated cost is $137.6 million.

"Australia is requesting these missiles for its Electronic Attack EA-18G Growler aircraft. The proposed sale will improve Australia’s capability in current and future coalition efforts. Australia will use this capability as a deterrent to regional threats and to strengthen its homeland defense," the DSCA added.

The prime contractors will be Orbital ATK and Raytheon Missile Systems Company.

Australia announced on 2013 its intention to buy 12 EA-18G Growler fighter jets, electronic warfare aircraft, a specialized version of the two-seat F/A-18F Super Hornet. The Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) took delivery of the first Growlers on 29 July 2015, with the delivery of the remaining jets expected by 2017. They will be operated by the RAAF No. 6 Squadron.

The AGM-88B High-Speed Anti-Radiation Missile (HARM)'s primary mission is to suppress surface-to-air missile radar and radar-directed air defense artillery systems. The improved AGm-88E variant features enhanced capabilities intended to counter radar shutdown and passive radar using active millimeter wave seeker.