Thailand is to integrate the IRIS-T short-range air-to-air missile (AAM) onto its fleet of Northrop F-5E/F Tiger II fighter aircraft, Diehl Defence announced on 18 June.
A contract for an unspecified number of IRIS-Ts to equip the Royal Thai Air Force’s (RTAF’s) F-5s was signed on 14 June, although Diehl did not disclose a value nor when deliveries would begin. The RTAF has previously integrated the missile onto its Saab Gripen and Lockheed Martin F-16 Fighting Falcon aircraft.
With the rollout onto the F-5 fleet, the IRIS-T will fully replace the Raytheon AIM-9 Sidewinder AAM in the RTAF’s inventory. As noted by Jane’s Air-Launched Weapons , the IRIS-T is a short-range, all-aspect infrared-homing missile that is similar in size and centre of gravity to the AIM-9L/M Sidewinder.
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