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US approves $250 million sale of Tomahawk cruise missiles to Australia Navy.

| Naval News Navy 2024

According to information published by DSCA on January 10, 2024, the U.S. State Department has approved a potential Foreign Military Sale to Australia, encompassing the General Tomahawk Weapons System Support Services Uplift along with associated equipment, at an estimated cost of $250 million.
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Russian Vyborg Shipyard laid the Purga ice class coastguard ship of project 23550 925 001 USS Chafee firing Tomahawk cruise missile. (Picture source: dvids)

The Tomahawk missiles, known for their long-range strike capability, will be integrated into the Royal Australian Navy's Hobart class destroyers. This integration is set to significantly bolster Australia's maritime strike capabilities, allowing the nation to effectively defend against potential future threats, particularly from China.

The Tomahawk is a jet-powered cruise missile, primarily used by the United States and the United Kingdom, and it represents a major enhancement in Australia's long-range strike capabilities.

The procurement of the Tomahawk missiles is not just about enhancing Australia's military arsenal; it also represents a deeper strategic alignment with the United States. By deploying these missile systems, Australia aims to contribute to global readiness and enhance the operational capabilities of U.S. forces and other allied forces. This move is seen as a deterrent to regional threats and a means to strengthen Australia's homeland defense.

Furthermore, the acquisition of the Tomahawk missiles is part of a broader defense strategy that includes the purchase of nuclear-powered attack submarines from the United States.

These submarines, along with the Tomahawk missiles, are expected to significantly increase Australia's military reach and capability, enabling the country to project power further from its shores and enhance its role in maintaining regional stability.

Technical data

 It has a mass of approximately 2,900 lb (1,300 kg) without its booster, increasing to 3,500 lb (1,600 kg) with the booster. The missile's length varies depending on the booster; it's 18 ft 3 in (5.56 m) long without the booster and 20 ft 6 in (6.25 m) with it. The Tomahawk's diameter is 20.4 inches (0.52 m), and it has a wingspan of 8 ft 9 in (2.67 m).

The Tomahawk is powered by a Williams International F107-WR-402 turbofan engine, using TH-dimer fuel and supplemented by a solid-fuel rocket booster. Its operational range is variant-dependent: Block II TLAM-N reaches approximately 1,350 nmi, Block III TLAM-C and Block IV TLAM-E have a range of about 900 nmi, and Block III TLAM-D about 700 nmi. The Block IV and Vb models have further extended ranges.

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