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Heat Seekers are missiles that track heat sources (typically enemy vehicles). They differ from laser-guided, radar-guided, or wire-guided weaponry.

Battlefield 3[]

"Heatseeking missiles launched by the pilot which lock on to and track enemy aircraft."
— Battlelog description


Jennifer Hawkins, an F/A-18F co-pilot is able to fire them during the jet mission, Going Hunting.


Heat Seekers
IR Flares Stealth
Unlocked at

• 800 AH score
• 1200 SH score
• 700 Jet score

Special Feature

Aircraft-tracking missile

Vehicle type

Air vehicles

Customization slot

Air Vehicle Weapon Specialization (Driver only)

Heat Seekers is an air vehicle specialization that adds a secondary weapon designed to counter other air vehicles. It is available for scout helicopters, fighter and attack jets, attack helicopters, and AA Tanks. Upon acquiring weapon lock, the pilot can fire up to two missiles, either the AIM-9X Sidewinder for US, or the R-73 Archer for RU, that will continue to track the target. The missiles also behave in a realistic fashion in that they follow the closest heat source and not always the targeted jet. Examples of this can be seen if a Heat Seeker is shot at two nearby airborne vehicles and the non targeted vehicle flies in the missile's path, causing it to change course and track said vehicle. This can cause unintended results such as a missile meant for a jet tracking a MAV instead. Only the vehicle's pilot may use the weapon. Any airborne vehicle can be targeted, from fighter aircraft all the way down to Micro-UAVs, and everything in-between.

When activated, the pilot's HUD changes to a perforated targeting circle, showing its lock-on area. One can tell if a successful lock-on by a low beeping tone and if the targeting reticule is flashing. A lock-on usually takes 3 seconds to lock, but with the upgrade Beam Scanning, the Lock-on will only take around 1 second. Each missile deals 45 damage to enemy jets, dealing a total of 90 in damage if both of the equipped Heat Seekers connect. Since a jet's disable threshold is 37, one missile hit will not disable the aircraft, but striking with the Main Gun or second Heat Seeker will have it disabled. Heat Seekers can be avoided in multiple ways including IR Flares which distract missiles in flight, ECM Jammer which will prevent lock on for a few seconds when deployed, by leading the missile into a solid object, and by luck in the case of missiles occasional missing their target for a multitude of reasons.

Battlefield 4[]

"Once locked on these heat-seeking missiles will guide themselves towards their target."
— Game description
Vehicle type

Attack Helicopter
Mobile Anti-Air
Scout Helicopter
Stealth Jet
Attack Jet

Customization slot

Secondary Weapon

Heat Seekers are a specialization in the upcoming game Battlefield 4. As in Battlefield 3, the vehicle operator must obtain weapon lock on an enemy aircraft, and can fire two missiles at a time.


  • Unlike the fact that the main pilot is only the one capable of using Heat Seekers, Jennifer Hawkins, a co-pilot can use them in singleplayer mode. This is because they are using a multi-person jet.