A U.S. Navy SH-60B Seahawk helicopter fires an AGM-119 missile off the coast of Okinawa, Japan, in July 2002.
Typelittoral anti-ship missile
Place of originNorway
Service history
In service1972–present
Production history
ManufacturerKongsberg Defence & Aerospace
Mass385 kg (849 lb) (MK2), 370 kg (820 lb) (MK3)
Length3.0 m (MK2), 3.2 m (MK3)
Diameter28 cm
Wingspan1.4 m (MK2), 1.0 m (MK3)
Warhead120 kg (MK2), 130 kg (MK3)
delay fuze

EngineSolid propellant sustainer
34+ km (MK2), 55+ km (MK3)
Flight altitudesea skimming
Maximum speed high subsonic
pulse-laser, passive IR (MK2), passive IR, radar altimeter (MK3)
naval ships, helicopters (MK2), fixed-wing aircraft (MK3)

The Penguin anti-ship missile, designated AGM-119 by the U.S. military, is a Norwegian passive IR seeker-based short-to-medium range anti-ship guided missile, designed for naval use.


Penguin was originally developed in a collaboration between the Norwegian Defence Research Establishment (NDRE; Norw. FFI) and Kongsberg Våpenfabrikk[1] starting in the early 1960s, with financial support from the U.S. and West Germany. US Navy test facilities and technical assistance were made available to facilitate development.[2] It was the first NATO anti-shipping missile with an IR seeker instead of the commonly used active radar seeker. Both hardware and software have been updated since entering series production in 1972.

Initial installation was in 500-kilogram (1,100 lb) deck-mounted box launchers with snap-open doors. These were designed for minimal deck intrusion, allowing them to be retrofitted to existing small ships. The first such installations were on Snøgg-class and Storm-class patrol boats of the Norwegian Navy. The first airborne installations were on F-104Gs of the Norwegian Air Force, the missiles being fitted to standard Bullpup rails on the two underwing hardpoints.

Fire-control was provided by a Kongsberg SM-3 computer which could cue the missiles based on either active radar or passive ESM data.[3]

The Penguin can be fired singly or in coordinated-arrival salvoes. Once launched the launching craft is free to turn away as the missile is inertially guided until the autonomous terminal homing phase. Propelled by a solid rocket engine, latest variants of Penguin can perform random weaving manoeuvres at target approach and strike the target close to the waterline. It can perform a terminal bunt and weave manoeuvre. The 120-kilogram (260 lb) warhead (originally based on that of the AGM-12 Bullpup, built under license by Kongsberg) detonates inside the target ship by using a delay fuze. The MK3, when launched from high altitudes, can initially act as a glidebomb, only firing its rocket engine to extend range, or ideally to achieve maximum speed before hitting the target; for better penetration.

Penguin MK3 (missile) displayed in the Norwegian Armed Forces Aircraft Collection
A Penguin MK2 mod 6 of the Norwegian Navy with its launch canister

In its various versions, the Penguin can be launched from a number of different weapons platforms:

KDA's successor to the Penguin is the Naval Strike Missile (NSM), offered from 2007 onwards. NSM features an imaging IR-seeker, GPS navigation, a turbojet sustainer engine (for much longer ranges, 185 kilometres [115 mi] or more), and significantly more computer performance and digital signal processing power.

Penguin missiles were donated to Ukraine in May 2022.[citation needed]


Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace (KDA) stated in November 2022 that Penguin Mk 2 mod 7 was in service in Brazil, Greece, New Zealand, Spain and Turkey and had been phased out by the US Navy.[4]




  1. ^ Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace (KDA) was formerly a part of Kongsberg Våpenfabrikk (KV) (1814–1986) and Norsk Forsvarsteknologi (NFT) (1987–1994), and is now part of Kongsberg Gruppen (KOG).
  2. ^ Bill Gunston, Illustrated Encyclopaedia of Rockets and Missiles, Salamander Books, 1979
  3. ^ Jane's Weapon Systems, 1970 - 71
  4. ^ "Missilet påsto både at det var armert og ikke armert – da gikk alarmen på Rygge". Teknisk Ukeblad. 26 November 2022. Retrieved 26 November 2022.
  5. ^ "Diário Oficial da União".[permanent dead link]
  6. ^ Rolleiv Solholm (2 October 2012). "Kongsberg to deliver missiles to Brazil". The Norway Post. Retrieved 7 October 2012.[permanent dead link]
  7. ^ "Royal New Zealand Navy selects KONGSBERGs Penguin anti-ship missile for Seasprite helicopters". 29 November 2013.
  8. ^ Solholm, Rolleiv (3 December 2013). "New Zealand selects Norwegian made anti-ship missile". The Norway Post. Retrieved 7 December 2013.
  9. ^ Rathbone, John (20 May 2022). "Military briefing: Ukraine seeks way to break Russia's Black Sea blockade". The Financial Times. Retrieved 20 August 2022.