Kh-25MP fitted on Su-17 series ground attack fighter.
Source: Miroslav Gyürösi - © Copyright lies with original owner
The Kh-25MP is an air-launched anti-radiation missile of Soviet origin. It was developed in the 1970's as a lightweight and short range anti-radiation missile for use by frontline aviation. In the West it is known by the NATO reporting name "AS-12 Kegler". The main role of the Kh-25MP is to improve the ability for frontline aviation to operate by suppressing enemy short range air defense systems.
The Kh-25MP is based on the airframe of the Kh-25 series of air to ground missiles. The Kh-25 series is known in the West as the AS-10 Karen. The Kh-25MP differs in having a passive radar homing seeker. Externally the Kh-25MP can be distinguished by the pointy nosecone and double forward fins. The seeker has a standalone target acquisition ability. The advantage is that the integration effort with aircraft types is limited and the missile can be used on many platforms. A drawback is that the pilot cannot select what target to engage. Nor is it practical to engage multiple targets with different missiles at the same time.
The Kh-25MP series feature passive homing radar seekers. The seekers are optimized for specific targets. The abilities differ significantly per variant of the missile. Early prototypes could only be used against MIM-14 Nike-Hercules. The more common Kh-25MP variant has a modular warhead. Before take-off one of two types of seekers is installed. The Kh-25MP adds the ability for use against Hawk and I-Hawk. The Kh-25MPU has a fixed wide range seeker and can also be used against Crotale and Roland. The MPU also has an inertial navigation module that allows the missile to stay on course when the target radar is temporarily shut off, but is not precise enough to accurately strike the last known position when the radar is not turned on anymore.
The Kh-25MP can be used with a wide variety of aircraft. The most common platform are the M3 and M4 variants of the Su-17 series, including the Su-22 export models. Several variants of the Su-25 can launch the missile as well. The MiG-23BN and MiG-27 ground attack fighters are also able to launch the missile. Su-24M and MiG-29M/K are launch platforms, but seldomly carry the Kh-25MP. A single missile is carried on an APU-68 or APU-68UM launch rail. Often two missiles are carried per launch aircraft.
The Kh-25MP was adopted by Soviet forces and remains in limited use with Russia today. It has been exported to several nations with ties with the Soviet Union. In Russian service the Kh-25MP has been mostly replaced by the more capable and flexible Kh-58, known in the West as the AS-11 Kilter.
Line diagram of Kh-25MP, shown with both types of sensor.
Source: Unknown author - © Copyright lies with original owner
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