Missile Procurement:

Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missile Preproduction Test Results

NSIAD-87-165FS: Published: Jun 2, 1987. Publicly Released: Jul 28, 1987.

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In response to a congressional request, GAO provided information on recent Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missile (AMRAAM) tests that demonstrated capabilities the Department of Defense Appropriation Act requires.

GAO noted that: (1) for fiscal year (FY) 1987, Congress appropriated $579.5 million to begin low-rate AMRAAM production; (2) the Air Force requested $832.9 million for FY 1988 and $875 million for FY 1989 AMRAAM production; and (3) by May 1, 1987, the Air Force conducted two of three planned AMRAAM flight tests. GAO found that the first test, which involved firing two missiles at two targets flying close together, was unsuccessful, since one missile failed to guide to either target and the other missile guided to the wrong target. GAO also found that the Air Force: (1) identified and corrected a missile software problem and successfully tested two modified missiles on May 1, 1987; (2) redesignated a second test, which was to be the first operational test involving two missiles and two targets, as a developmental test after the AMRAAM Program Office proposed additional changes to improve the missile's probability of success; (3) aborted the revised second test because one of the missiles had a wiring defect; (4) corrected the wiring problem and successfully conducted the revised second test on April 27, 1987; (5) identified several problems involving the missile's guidance and fuze that it will correct before production begins; and (6) decided to reschedule the third test for October 1987, since the second test was successful, and it did not need the third test to satisfy the act's requirements.

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