MEDIUM RANGE - ENHANCED
- ASMPA replaces the ASMP (strategic and ultimate deterrent air-launched nuclear missile, for deployment by France’s strategic air forces and which can be carried under the Mirage 2000N).
- ASMPA, a supersonic missile carrying a nuclear charge, was initial entry into service on the K3 standard of the Mirage 2000N (until 2018) and now on the Rafale F3R.
- In the longer term, the future ASN4G strategic missile will replace the renovated ASMPA (ASMPA-R).
The ASMPA air vehicle uses the air vehicle pre-developed for the Vesta activity (ramjet air vehicle) in conjunction with the ANF future anti-ship programme (ANF was suspended at the end of 1999). A ramjet motor powers the missile.
This mode of propulsion, compared to a traditional rocket propulsion system, allows for the significant reduction of both the required space within the missile as well as missile weight in relation to the required range and warhead charge. It allows the missile to cover a large part of the flight envelope at high supersonic speeds.
ASMPA-R is the next strategic missile equipping the Strategic Air Forces (FAS) within the Air and Space Force and the nuclear naval air force (FANu) within the French Navy.