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09 Dec 14. Thailand to continue development of 122mm MRL system. Thailand’s Defence Technology Institute (DTi), the Thai Ministry of Defence’s (MoD’s) primary research and development arm, has signed an accord with the Royal Thai Army (RTA) to further develop and manufacture an indigenous 122mm multiple rocket launcher (MRL) known as DTi-2. A memorandum of agreement (MoA) signed by the two parties on 9 December facilitates the further development of the DTi-2 over three phases, gradually extending its range to 40 km. Following a successful test-firing of a DTi-2 prototype in November, the MoA has called for the rocket system to be delivered to the RTA by the end 2015. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
11 Dec 14. The Italian aerospace and defence company Alenia Aermacchi, working closely with its Eurofighter partners, has successfully conducted the first release of a Storm Shadow missile from a Eurofighter Typhoon aircraft as part of its missile integration programme.
The trials took place in November and saw the missile being released from the aircraft and tracked by radar up to impact. Storm Shadow provides a significant leap in the Eurofighter Typhoon’s operational capabilities, enabling the platform to deploy multiple weapons at a very long range well clear of danger from air defences. Alberto Gutierrez, Chief Executive Officer of Eurofighter GmbH said: “The trials represents an important step forward in the development and integration of the Storm Shadow weapon system onto the Eurofighter Typhoon. The results help pave the way for full integration of the missile onto the aircraft for operational use.” In parallel to the flight trials led by Alenia Aermacchi, another Eurofighter partner, BAE Systems, has completed the first trial installation of a Storm Shadow missile onto a RAF Typhoon with support from weapons provider MBDA. The confirmation of this procedure is an essential part of the integration contract. Storm Shadow, already in service with the Italian Air Force and Royal Air Force Tornados, is a conventionally armed, stealthy, long-range stand-off precision weapon designed to neutralise high value targets. The new weapons system will add the capability to strike in day or night in all-weather conditions, well-defended infrastructure targets such as port facilities, control centres, bunkers, missile sites, airfields and bridges that would otherwise require several aircraft and missions. This is a new addition to the Eurofighter Typhoon’s potent simultaneous multi-/swing-role capabilities. Powered by a turbo-jet engine, with a range in excess of 250 km, the Storm Shadow missile weighs approximately 1.300kg and is just over 5 metres long. It will be available to operators when the Eurofighter Typhoon Phase 2 Enhancements become operational.
08 Dec 14. Armed forces from Norway, Finland, Switzerland and Turkey successfully fired five Raytheon Company -built Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missile (AMRAAM) AIM-120C7s as part of the Thor’s Hammer flight test campaign in September. Launched from F-16 and F/A-18 fighter aircraft and the National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile System (NASAMS) ground launchers, the missiles achieved five successful shots on a variety of profiles and targets. Norway shot one AIM-120C7 from a NASAMS High Mobility Launcher and Finland shot two from a NASAMS canister launcher, while Switzerland successfully fired one from an F-18 and Turkey fired one from an F-16. “AMRAAM is the world’s most advanced air dominance weapon, and these successful tests once again demonstrate the missile’s extraordinary level of effectiveness and reliability,” said Mike Jarrett, vice president of Raytheon’s Air Warfare Systems. “Intercepting all five targets from different platforms showcased AMRAAM’s versatility across different scenarios for U.S. and allied for