Air-Sol Moyenne Portée

Type medium-range nuclear air-to-surface missile
Place of origin France
Service history
In service May 1986[1]
Production history
Manufacturer Aérospatiale
Weight 860 kg[2]
Length 5.38 m
Diameter 380 mm
Warhead TN 81 nuclear warhead, 150 kt or 300 kt of TNT (variable yield)

Engine liquid-fuel ramjet
300 km (500+km for ASMP-A version)[3]
Speed up to Mach 3
Dassault Mirage IV, Dassault Mirage 2000N, Dassault Rafale, and Dassault Super Étendard

The Air-Sol Moyenne Portée (ASMP; medium-range air to surface missile) is a French nuclear air-launched cruise missile. In French nuclear doctrine it is called a "pre-strategic" weapon, the last-resort "warning shot" prior to a full-scale employment of strategic nuclear weapons. The missile's construction was contracted to Aérospatiale's Tactical Missile Division, now part of MBDA. The missile cost $600 million to develop.[1]

ASMP entered service in May 1986, replacing the earlier free-fall AN-22 bomb on France's Dassault Mirage IV aircraft and the AN-52 bomb on Dassault Super Étendard. About 84 weapons are stockpiled. Carrier aircraft are the Dassault Mirage 2000N, Rafale, and Super Étendard; the earlier Mirage IVA was retired in 1996, although Mirage IVP photo reconnaissance aircraft continued in French Air Force service until 2005.

ASMPA is 5.38 m long and weighs 860 kg. It is a supersonic standoff missile powered by a liquid fuel ramjet. It flies at Mach 2 to Mach 3, with a range between 80 km and 300 km (ASMP)/ 500 km (ASMPA) depending on flight profile. Warhead was a single 300 kt of TNT TN 81 for ASMP, and a single 300 kt of TNT Airborne Nuclear Warhead (TNA).

In 1991, 90 missiles and 80 warheads were reported to have been produced. By 2001, 60 were operational.[4]


An advanced version known as Air-Sol Moyenne Portée-Amélioré ASMP-A (improved ASMP) has a range of about 500 kilometres (310 mi)[5] at a speed of up to Mach 3 with the new TNA (tête nucléaire aéroportée) 300kt thermonuclear warhead.[3] It entered service in October 2009 with the Mirage 2000NK3 of squadron EC 3/4 at Istres and on July 2010 with the Rafales of squadron EC 1/91 at Saint Dizier.[6]


The studies for the successor to the ASMP-A, dubbed ASN4G, have already begun. ASN4G refers to air-sol nucléaire fourth-generation.[7] The aim is to design a missile capable of either high supersonic (Mach 4-5) or hypersonic speeds (Mach 7-8)[8][9]




External links

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