Lockheed Martin and Roketsan signed a contract Wednesday at the Turkish missile company’s booth at DSEI, minting a cooperation agreement to develop the SOM-J missile intended for integration into the US Air Force and Navy versions of the F-35 fighter jet. The 100nm (185km)-range air-to-surface standoff cruise missile has been adapted from Roketsan’s larger Stand Off Missile (SOM), and will be carried internally in the F-35. It is in a similar class to Norway’s Kongsberg Joint Strike Missile.
“SOM-J is a variant of an existing, larger SOM missile that is flight certified and in production in support of the Turkish F-4 and F-16 programmes - external carriage,” Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control’s director of strike systems Alan Jackson explains. “We’re going to take elements of that design and adapt it to the SOM-J weapon - a smaller airframe that will fit inside the conventional take-off and landing F-35A and carrier variant F-35C.
“Lockheed Martin has a long history of partnership with the Republic of Turkey, and we look forward to working closely with Roketsan on this very important project,”Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control Executive Vice President Rick Edwards said.
“SOM-J will provide the F-35 and other aircraft an exceptional capability to meet the most challenging mission requirements. We look forward to combining the skills and know-how of our two great companies to produce a world-class system to meet customers’ expanding needs for long-range, survivable cruise missile technology.”
Roketsan Inc. was founded in 1988 for the purpose of “possessing a leading institution in the country for designing, developing and manufacturing rockets and missiles.” Roketsan is rapidly going forward to become a global company in defense industries sector with personnel of more than 1,800, 51 percent of which comprise engineers, an invested capital of TL 4 billion and its accumulation of technologic knowledge. Roketsan has become a corporation, the operations of which now extend beyond the borders of the country, which participates in NATO programs in its field of technology and is capable of supplying its products to friendly countries besides the Turkish Armed Forces.
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