Another of the weapons that Azerbaijan uses against Armenia in the war for Nagorno-Karabakh is the SOM cruise missile.
The SOM (Turkish: Satha Atılan Orta Menzilli Mühimmat) is a next-generation autonomous, low observable, high precision cruise missile developed by TÜBİTAK SAGE, Defence Research and Development Institute of Turkey.
The SOM stand-off cruise missile is a family of launch and leave precision strike weapons against both land or sea targets.
It uses GPS as its primary mode of guidance complemented by an advanced Inertial Navigation System and a radar-based Terrain Referenced Navigation system, allowing the missile to skim the terrain during its flight in order to evade local defence systems
According to the developer, it features advanced geometry and aerodynamics over similar missile systems, as well as lightweight composite components that minimize the radar cross-section of the missile. A terminal stage infrared imager detects the individual target by matching its signature with a pre-loaded database of similar targets allowing for precision strike.
While initially the range of the missile was announced to be 100 nmi, debates arose in local press around the missile’s real range after Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan unexpectedly set objectives for the development of a missile with a range of 2,500 km (1,300 nmi) at the plenary session of the High Science and Technology Council on December 28th, 2011.
On October 26th, 2018, Turkey’s defense industry authority announced that the missile entered serial production phase with Roketsan.
Azerbaijan reportedly only has ground-launched SOM missiles, but there are also sea-launched and air-launched variants.
The SOM missile was demonstrated in the 100th anniversary parade of Azerbaijan Army for the first time which makes it clear that Azerbaijan has got SOM-B1 modified version making it the first foreign user of SOM missile, AzeriDefence reported.
SOM-B1 missile is used for land and sea targets and allows fighter jets of AAF to destroy the targets that is located behind the frontline with high precision without catching by Anti-aircraft warfare.
It is unclear what the air-based missile would be used with by Azerbaijan and if it had bought specifically that kind.
The SOM missile has been integrated for use on TAI produced Turkish Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon (CCIP and Block 50) and Turkish Air Force operated F-4E 2020. Azerbaijan operates none of those.
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