Ukraine uses NASAMS 3 SAMs

Ukraine uses NASAMS 3 SAMs

Air Defense NASAMS Ukraine War with Russia

The Ukrainian military has received the latest version of NASAMS 3 systems, which can use new anti-aircraft missiles.

United24 Foundation published a video of the system’s use.

The video captures the interception of air objects by the Ukrainian NASAMS anti-aircraft system, which fired a short-range AIM-9X missile. Their use is implemented only on third-generation systems.

The AIM-9X can be easily distinguished by the absence of flaps in the middle part of the fuselage, which are present on the AIM-120 AMRAAM missiles, which are the base missiles for the system.

Presumably, the camera captured one of the NASAMS 3 systems ordered by the US government for Ukraine in 2022. Norway and Lithuania, which have such systems, could be another source of supply.

“We have 252 confirmed targets, including 114 drones and 137 cruise missiles intercepted by our unit,” says the battery commander, call sign Baron.

According to Baron, working in difficult conditions and constantly on duty in Ukraine revealed a number of vulnerabilities that Kongsberg engineers worked out and fixed, considering the wishes of the Ukrainian military.

The officer said that his unit communicates with the developers and passes on their advice on how to improve the system. They have even developed a new approach to the reloading process of the SAM.

“I will not reveal any secrets. This is an innovation of our unit. There were cases when we reloaded our launchers twice right in the middle of enemy fire,” he says.


The main difference between the third-generation air defense system and the systems transferred to Ukraine in 2022 is the new Fire Distribution Center and Mk.2 launcher, which allowed the use of anti-aircraft missiles of other models.

The latest version of the system, in addition to the AIM-120 AMRAAM basic interceptors, includes AIM-9X short-range missiles and AMRAAM-ER medium-range missiles.

The AIM-9X is a modern short-range air-to-air missile with an infrared homing warhead. Due to its specifics, it is ideally suited for intercepting high-pressure aerial targets. When launched from the ground, this missile’s range is limited to 12 km.

At the same time, the AMRAAM-ER is a missile that should significantly increase NASAMS’ long-range air-to-ground intercept capabilities. Thanks to the new solid-fuel engine and modern seeker, the missile can hit targets at a distance of up to 50 km. However, to realize the potential of AMRAAM-ER, the anti-aircraft system must be equipped with a new powerful radar station, which has not been announced as part of the Ukrainian NASAMS.

At the end of April, Militarnyi also reported that the Norwegian company Kongsberg was trying to modernize the NASAMS anti-aircraft system to intercept ballistic missiles.

Air Defense NASAMS Ukraine War with Russia