Japan requests the purchase of US RAM Block 2 Tactical Missiles RIM-116C

According to information published by the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) on August 4, 2021, the U.S. State Department has made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to the Government of Japan of RAM Block 2 Tactical Missiles RIM-116C and related equipment for an estimated cost of $61.5 million.
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Russian Vyborg Shipyard laid the Purga ice class coastguard ship of project 23550 925 001 A RIM-116 Rolling Airframe Missile (RAM) is fired from the forward launcher during a live-fire exercise aboard the amphibious assault ship USS Tripoli LHA 7. (Picture source U.S. Navy)

The Government of Japan has requested to buy up to forty-four (44) Rolling Airframe Missiles (RAM) Block 2 Tactical Missiles, RIM-116C. Also included are RAM Block 2 Guidance Control Groups; RAM Guided Missile Round Pack Tri-Pack shipping and storage containers; operator manuals and technical documentation; U.S. Government and contractor engineering, technical and logistics support services; and other related elements of logistics and program support. The total estimated program cost is $61.5 million.

The proposed will provide significantly enhanced area defense capabilities over critical East Asian and Western Pacific air and sea-lines of communication. Japan will have no difficulty absorbing these services and support into its armed forces.

The principal contractor will be Raytheon Missiles and Defense, Tucson, AZ. There are no known offset agreements proposed in connection with this potential sale.

The RIM-116 RAM is designed as a high-firepower, low-cost, self-defense system against anti-ship cruise missiles and other asymmetric threats. For all versions of the missile, there is no shipboard support required (i.e., no illuminators) after the missile launch. 

The RIM-116 Block 2 missile provides kinematic and guidance improvements for countering maneuvering and low probability of intercept threats to regain battlespace. It features a Control Section upgrade (4 canards vs. 2 for Block 1A), a Propulsion Section upgrade (a larger, composite case rocket motor) and an Evolved Radio Frequency (ERF) receiver.

The RIM-116 RAM is fully operational in the U.S., German and allied Navies (including South Korea, Greece, Egypt, UAE, Turkey and Japan) with over 5000 missiles produced throughout the life of the program. RAM is deployed worldwide via the MK49 RAM Guided Missile Launching System (GMLS) and the MK15 Mod 32 SeaRAM Close-In Weapon System (CIWS) on more than 100 ships ranging from fast patrol boats to aircraft carriers and is being installed on a majority of new USN ship classes (LHA 6, CVN 78, and FFG(x)). The RIM-116 RAM is also deployed on the LCS ship class utilizing MK15 Mod 31 SeaRAM CIWS and DDG (64/71/75/78) utilizing MK15 Mod 33 SeaRAM CIWS.