Boeing has delivered the first of 60 production Conventional Air-Launched Cruise Missile (CALCM) / Air-Launched Cruise Missile (ALCM) Test Instrumentation Kits (CATIK) to the US Air Force under a $38m contract.
The air force uses the kits to monitor in-flight missile performance. The kits also allow for remote command-and-control and flight termination of ALCMs and CALCMs during operational testing, transmitting the information to the flight test control centre.
ALCM is a self-guided weapon that carries a nuclear warhead. CALCM, designed in the 1990s, carries a conventional warhead. CALCMs are produced by converting surplus nuclear-armed AGM-86B missiles into the AGM-86C missile.
When launched, ALCM weapons fly to their targets using terrain correlation mapping, while CALCM weapons use GPS guidance. During flight tests, both weapons fly a pre-programmed course over the range for up to four hours.