Iraq War: Hellfire

AGM-114 Hellfire Missile

Services: Navy, Army, Marine Corps

Description: Hellfire is an air-to-ground, laser guided, subsonic missile with significant antitank capacity. It can also be used as an air-to-air weapon against helicopters or slow-moving fixed-wing aircraft.

Features: Hellfire can be used as an air-to-air or an air-to-ground missile. The Air-to-Ground (AGM)-114 provides precision striking power against tanks, structures, bunkers and helicopters. The Hellfire missile is capable of defeating any known tank in the world today. It can be guided to the target either from inside the aircraft or by lasers outside the aircraft.

Background: In FY98, Congress added $20M for the procurement of 100 AGM -114M blast fragmentation warhead missiles and 100 each Captive Air Training Missile (CATM)-114K training missiles. The CATM-114K training missiles were delivered in April 2000, and the AGM-114M was delivered in December 2000. In FY00, an $20M was added to provide for the procurement of additional AGM-114K missiles to meet shortages in the inventory.

The Advanced Prototype Engineering and Experimentation (APEX) lab at Redstone Arsenal, Huntsville, Ala., in partnership with PMA-242, demonstrated the latest Modernized Hellfire technologies for use in close air support and urban missions. The APEX lab provides modeling and simulation support for all Services.

General Characteristics

Primary Function: Point target/anti-armor weapon, Semi-active laser seeker
Three variants: AGM-114B/K/M
Contractor: Boeing, Lockheed Martin
Power Plant: solid propellant rocket
Length: 5.33 feet (1.6246 meters)
Launch Weight: 98 to 107 pounds (44.45 to 48.54 kilograms)
Diameter: 7 inches (17.78 centimeters)
Wing Span: 28 inches (0.71 meter)
Speed: Subsonic
Warhead: Shaped charge and blast fragmentation.
Aircraft Platforms:
Navy: SH-60B/HH-60H Seahawk
Army: AH-64 Apache
Marine: AH-1W Super Cobra