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Japan explores missile launching from cargo planes

26th July 2023 - 03:00 GMT | by Koji Miyake in Tokyo


Rapid Dragon pictured during a USAF test. (Photo: US DoD)

Japan is considering the use of cargo planes to launch missiles, aiming to diversify its launch platform options. The introduction of the Rapid Dragon system, tested by the USAF, could expand the capabilities of the JSDF's stand-off missile arsenal.

Japan is considering capabilities to enable launching missiles from cargo planes, to diversify its launch platform options.

The Japan Self-Defense Force (JSDF) could introduce the Rapid Dragon that the USAF is developing, in a move that would allow the C-2 cargo plane to launch missiles.

The JSDF is introducing stand-off missile capabilities such as the enhanced Type 12 surface-to-ship missile (12SSM), hypersonic glide vehicle, hypersonic cruise missile and Tomahawk Block V cruise missile.

F-2 and F-15J fighters, Aegis destroyers, submarines and Type 12 SSM launchers are used as launch platforms for stand-off missiles.

Adopting a Rapid Dragon-type system could see this

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Koji Miyake


Koji Miyake

Koji Miyake is a Tokyo-based writer.

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