Norway may have a reputation as one the world's most peaceful nations. But like other members of the international community, they know the world can at times be a not-so-friendly place.
That's why for the past three years the Norwegian-based Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace firm has been developing the Naval Strike Missile, one of the most agile cruise missiles and soon-to-be weapon of choice for the F-35 Lightning II stealth fighter. The sophisticated 900-pound missile is equipped with GPS, inertial and terrain reference systems, enabling it to stealthily maneuver along all kinds of terrain such as the coastline, oceans and over land. To avoid radar detection, it's capable of cruising in "sea-skim mode" just above the ocean's surface. It can also pull off quick random high-G-force maneuvers to prevent getting shot down at the very last second. A combination of an imaging infrared (IIR) seeker and an onboard target database ensures that the missile can seek out and detect targets up to 100 nautical miles away with pinpoint precision.
While it's being developed for Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II "Joint Strike Fighters"as part of the Joint Strike Missile program, the Royal Norwegian Navy plans to have them lock and loaded aboard their Fridtjof Nansen class warships and Skjold class patrol boats. The Polish military is also an eager customer.
After watching this test video, released last week, you'll see why: