The Vikings Have Arrived

Nordic air-defence technology will be put to the ultimate test.


Industry Handout

A unit of the National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile System, or NASAMS, undergoes firing tests.

Ishan Pahwa, Staff Writer

  On Oct. 25, Raytheon Technologies delivered two of their most sophisticated air defence systems to the United States government for deployment in Ukraine: National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile System otherwise known as NASAMS. 

   Designed in partnership between Raytheon Technologies and Kongsberg Defence and Aerospace of Norway, the weapons system will provide medium to long range defence of Ukrainian skies, in hopes to free them of Russian aerial attacks, according to Defense News

   “We did just deliver two NASAMS systems… We delivered two of them to the government a couple of weeks ago. They’re being installed in Ukraine [imminently],” Raytheon CEO Greg Hayes stated in an interview on CNBC.   

    NASAMS is designed to engage a wide variety of aerial targets such as aeroplanes, helicopters, drones and both ballistic and cruise missiles. The primary ammunition for the system consists of the reputable U.S.-built AIM-120 Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missile (AMRAAM), which is also being used on all U.S.-built fighter jets as well as in jets from allied countries.   

   The United States has promised to deliver two NASAMS systems within weeks and six more systems over a longer time span. Ukraine will announce when the systems are in their country and ready for action.

   Officials from the Pentagon stated that the first systems were procured at such a fast pace because the majority of the systems had already been produced. 

    In the third-quarter earnings call for Raytheon on Oct. 25, Hayes stated that the firm expected more orders for the missile system to follow “shortly,” as demand for it has skyrocketed following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. “We’re also seeing significant global demand for advanced air-defence systems, especially in Eastern Europe,” he added.  

    Ever since the beginning of the conflict between Ukraine and Russia, the U.S. has provided in excess of $17 billion worth of military aid to Ukraine and has imposed numerous sanctions on Russia in the process.