Raytheon AIM-54C Phoenix

The AIM-54 Phoenix Missile, used exclusively on the F-14A/B/D Aircraft, is a radar guided, air-to-air missile consisting of a guidance section, armament section, propulsion section, control section, interconnecting surface cables, wings, and fins. The missile is designed for ejection launch using the LAU-93 or LAU-132 launchers. Semi-active and active homing radar and hydraulically operated fins direct and stabilize the missile on course to the target. This is one of two known Phoenix 54C missiles to be on display in the U.S. The other is in the Smithsonian Museum.

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Specifications

Primary Function: Long range air-launched air intercept missile
Power Plant: Solid propellant rocket motor build by Hercules
Thrust: lbs
Speed: Mach 5
Range: 100 nautical miles
Length: 13 feet
Wingspan: 3 ft (910 mm)
Warhead: 135 lb (61 kg), high explosive
Guidance System: Semi-active radar homing and terminal phase active radar homing
Aircraft Platforms: F-14 Tomcat
Unit Cost: Approximately: $477,131
Manufactured by: Raytheon Corporation (Also manufactured by Hughes Aircraft)

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History

The AIM-54 Phoenix Long-range air-to-air missile, carried in clusters of up to six missiles on the F-14 Tomcat. The Phoenix missile is the Navy's only long-range air-to-air missile. It is an airborne weapons control system with multiple-target handling capabilities, used to kill multiple air targets with conventional warheads. The weapon system consists of an AIM-54 guided missile, interface system, and a launch aircraft with an AN/AWG-9 weapon control system. The AIM-54 is a radar-guided, air-to-air, long-range missile consisting of a guidance, armament, propulsion, and control section, interconnecting cables, wings and fins. The total weapon system has the capability to launch as many as six AIM-54 missiles simultaneously from the F-14 aircraft against an equal number of targets in all weather and heavy jamming environments.

The AIM-54 Phoenix Missile was developed in the 1970s as the principle long-range, air-to-air, defense armament of the F-14 Aircraft. The AIM-54 Phoenix Missile is a fielded weapon currently in Phase III, the Production, Fielding/Deployment, and Operational Support Phase of the Weapon System Acquisition Process.

The three versions of the AIM-54 Phoenix Missile currently being used are the AIM-54A, AIM-54C, and the AIM-54 ECCM/Sealed. The AIM-54 is a radar-guided, air-to-air, long-range missile consisting of a guidance, armament, propulsion, and control section, interconnecting cables, wings and fins. The AIM-54A was the original version to become operational. The improved Phoenix, the AIM-54C, can better counter projected threats from tactical aircraft and cruise missiles. The AIM-54C (sealed) missile is the most recent version and contains improved electronic counter-countermeasure capabilities and does not require coolant conditioning during captive flight. The AIM-54C and AIM-54C (sealed) contains built-in self test and additional missile on-aircraft test capability. The AIM-54C missile has also been designed for greater reliability, longer serviceable in-service time, and a 15 percent reduction in parts.

Initial Operating Capability was attained in 1974 for the AIM-54A, 1986 for the AIM-54C, and 1988 for the AIM-54C ECCM/Sealed. The AIM-54C and AIM-54C ECCM/Sealed are replacing the AIM-54A. As AIM-54A inventories are depleted they will not be replenished. The AIM-54A Technical Evaluation (TECHEVAL) was completed in November 1973. Operational Evaluation (OPEVAL) was completed in November 1974. The AIM-54C TECHEVAL began in May 1982 and was completed in November 1982. The OPEVAL began in March 1983 and was completed in August 1983. AIM-54C ECCM/Sealed Missile TECHEVAL was completed in June 1985, and OPEVAL was completed in July 1988.

The AIM-54 Phoenix Missile, used exclusively on the F-14A/B/D Aircraft, is a radar guided, air-to-air missile consisting of a guidance section, armament section, propulsion section, control section, interconnecting surface cables, wings, and fins. The missile is designed for ejection launch using the LAU-93 or LAU-132 launchers. Semi-active and active homing radar and hydraulically operated fins direct and stabilize the missile on course to the target. Propulsion is provided by a solid propellant rocket motor, and lethality by a high explosive warhead. Performance modifications to the AIM-54A were incorporated during and after production. The Reject Image Device (RID), High Altitude Performance (HAP), and Extended Active Gate (EAG) were incorporated during production. The MK 11 MOD 3 Electronics Assembly (EA) modification was installed by retrofit after production. The AIM-54C and AIM-54C ECCM/Sealed Missile have a Built In Self Test (BIST) feature. BIST may be selected in conjunction with Missile On Aircraft Test (MOAT). The AIM-54C ECCM/Sealed Missile provides two major improvements over the AIM-54C. ECCM provides enhanced electronic protection and sealing the missile eliminates the requirement for aircraft supplied liquid thermal conditioning fluid during captive flight.

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