|Primary Function:||Long range air-launched air intercept missile|
|Power Plant:||Solid propellant rocket motor build by Hercules|
|Range:||100 nautical miles|
|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)|
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.