Kalij Fars, Variant of Fateh-110, with EO SeekerIran's Khalij Fars ("Persian Gulf") anti-ship ballistic missile (AShBM) is being delivered to operational units, Jane's quoted from Pentagon's annual report to Congress.
"Tehran is quietly fielding increasingly lethal symmetric and asymmetric weapon systems, including more advanced naval mines, small butcapable submarines, coastal defense cruise missile batteries, attack craft, and anti-ship ballistic missiles," the report's declassified executive summary said. (HIS Jane's 360, 8 September)
This is the first confirmation that Iranian AShBMs are indeed in service.
Although Khalij Fars is a variant of Fateh-110, which has been in service for some time, but the addition of an electro-optical (EO) seeker to the tip of Fateh-110's noses is a major technological breakthrough for Iranian defense industry. Iran now has an effective way to acquire and track over-the-horizon targets, enabling the missile's guidance system to be programmed and then updated during flight to find its target.
In 2011, Iranian media reported that Khalij Fars was going to be mass produces. Last March, MODAFL (Iran's Ministry of Defense and Armed Forces Logistics) held a public ceremony to deliver the missiles to military's operational units. However, the eight Khalij Fars that were featured in the ceremony had the tip of their noses covered by a protective cap, making it impossible to see the EO seeker that distinguishes them from the Fateh-110 (as in the photo here), Jane's reported.
"This ballistic missile (Khalij Fars) has a range of 300 km, which means it is capable of threatening maritime activity throughout the Persian Gulf and Strait of Hormuz," said Vice Admiral James Syring, the director of U.S. Missile Defense Agency, in a congressional hearing in June.(IHS Jane's 360, 8 September)
File credit: Khalij Fars AShBM foreground (with a protective cap coving its EO seeker). Also shown is a regular Fateh-110. (Fars News Agecy/IHS Jane's 360)