First Firing of the Modernized ASMPA Strategic Missile
(Source: French Armed Forces Ministry; issued Dec. 9, 2020)
(Unofficial translation by Defense-Aerospace.com)
An ASMPA nuclear stand-off missile mounted on the centerline pylon of a French Air Force Rafale fighter. The first firing of an upgraded ASMPA was carried out yesterday, marking the beginning of its qualification phase. (FR AF file photo)
PARIS --- Florence Parly, Minister of the Armed Forces, expresses her great satisfaction after the success, on December 9, 2020, of the first firing of the modernized Air-Sol Moyenne Portée Amélioré (ASMPA) air-launched, medium-range stand-off missile.

She extends her warm congratulations to all the personnel of the Ministry of the Armed Forces and of the MBDA and Dassault Aviation companies who have contributed to its success.

The missile, developed by MBDA, was fired from a Dassault Aviation Rafale, as part of a program under the supervision of the DGA, which took off from Air Base 120 in Cazaux. Throughout its flight phase, the missile was monitored by DGA Missile Tests at Biscarosse, Hourtin and Quimper, with the participation of DGA Flight Tests.

This success marks the beginning of the qualification phase of the modernized ASMPA missile, a prerequisite before its entry into service in the Strategic Air Forces (FAS) of the Air and Space Army and in the Nuclear Naval Air Force (FANU) of the French Navy.

This armament program responds to the will of the President of the Republic, who is committed "to take the decisions necessary to maintain their operational credibility over time, at the level of strict sufficiency required by the international environment".


(EDITOR’S NOTE: The ASMPA missile is designed to carry a nuclear warhead of about 300 kilotons at a range of about 500 kilometers. It entered operational service in 2010, replacing the medium-range air-to-surface missile (ASMP) from which it is derived, and is now undergoing a mid-life update.)

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