Deploying high-performing air force weapons and combat aircraft is about more than just protecting a country’s airspace and projecting a formidable air power. What gives an edge in the arena of modern warfare is the type, numbers, and capability of weapons that the aircraft are armed with.

Modern aerial weapons can locate, select and engage airborne and surface targets precisely and effectively. Continued technological advances and great power rivalry in a changing international order are further driving the demand for yet more lethal and faster aerial weapons with longer range and pinpoint accuracy.

Finding the best air force weapons suppliers

Airforce Technology has listed some of the top aerial weapon manufacturers and suppliers based on its intel, insights, and decades-long experience in the sector.

The list includes companies that specialise in the design, manufacturing and supply of different aerial weapon systems for a broad range of military applications.

The information contained within the download document is useful for warfare strategists, armed forces commanders, senior procurement executives, system engineers, defence systems specialists, technicians, and any other individual involved in the acquisition, operation and maintenance of aerial weapons.

The download contains detailed information on some of the major aerial weapon contractors and their product lines, alongside contact details to aid your purchasing decision.

Related Buyer’s Guides which contain an extensive range of air force equipment manufacturers, technology and solutions can also be found here.

Types and uses of weapons in the air

Air forces use weaponry of different types and ranges to overcome aerial adversaries and mount lethal strikes against targets on the ground, as well as those on the water or underwater.

The types of aerial weapons used for military purposes include, but are not limited to:

· Air-dropped bombs and precision-guided munitions (PGMs)

· Tactical guided air-to-air and air-to-surface missiles

· Laser and GPS-guided long, medium and short-range aerial missiles

· Air-launched cruise missiles (ALCMs)

· Air-launched torpedoes

· Aircraft automatic cannons

· Loitering munitions, and

· Radar targeting pods

Advancements in aerial weapons technology

The application of modern technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) and robotics within the aerospace and defense sector could enable the production of smarter and more autonomous aerial weapons, changing the face of air warfare. Meanwhile, major military powers are competing to develop air-launched hypersonic missiles, a class of ultra-fast and rapid response missiles that can fly at speeds exceeding Mach 5 and possess high survivability against enemy defences.

Research, development, and testing are also underway for tactical air-based laser weapons that can provide self-defence against aircraft, incoming ballistic missiles, and other powerful weapons and missiles.

Download our list here.