Sponsored by Control Solutions LLC.
17 Jun 15. In May 2015, MBDA Deutschland deployed a laser effector to acquire, track, and defeat a free-flying mini drone, the first time such technology has been used to this effect. The mini drone was destroyed within seconds of the start of the test which was carried out at MBDA Deutschland’s testing area in Schrobenhausen. The drone in question manoeuvred in the target area at a range of about 500m with the test proving the laser effector’s capability to combat realistic targets with precision, speed and safety. Commercial mini drones represent a new type of threat that is nearly impossible to counter with conventional effectors. In 2013 a mini drone crashed at a distance of only two meters from German Chancellor Angela Merkel and other dignitaries during an election campaign event being held in Dresden, Germany. In France alone, more than 60 overflights by such craft over strategically significant locations have been reported since October 2014. Highly precise and scalable laser weapon systems could protect major events and critical infrastructures and close a current capability gap. At the heart of MBDA Deutschland’s technological approach is a multi-stage, highly precise tracking procedure and laser effector that bundles numerous laser sources into a single laser beam using the principle of geometric coupling. These processes make it possible to combat small, highly agile targets reliably with a single laser effector. MBDA Deutschland has proven the functionality of its laser effectors in a range of tests. As far back as 2012, MBDA Deutschland demonstrated the full operational sequence, from target acquisition to target engagement, at distances of up to 2.5 km against a dummy mortar. In its system studies, MBDA Deutschland is examining laser-armament options for waterborne platforms and ground-based mobile laser effector concepts with high power sources, 360-degree coverage and open system architecture for close and intermediate-range protection against micro UAVs and RAM (rocket and mortar) targets.
17 Jun 15. Sagem studying new warheads for AASM. Key Points:
* Sagem expects to complete a study later this year on fitting the AASM kit onto a range of new warhead sizes
* The company also confirmed Egypt as an export customer for the rocket-boosted PGM
Sagem is working to add new warheads to the capabilities of the Armement Air-Sol Modulaire (AASM) rocket-boosted precision-guided munition (PGM), the company confirmed on 16 June at the Paris Air Show.
Marketed for export as Hammer, the missile has been ordered by Egypt as part of the February government-to-government agreement between the French and Egyptian governments for 24 Dassault Rafale fighter aircraft and FREMM frigates, Sagem confirmed at Le Bourget.
Sagem would not confirm the volume of AASMs ordered as part of the sale, or the value of the contract itself, but stated it was a “major” sale.
AASM is a guidance kit for gravity bombs, much like the US Paveway line. AASM offers an additional standoff capability however, as it features a rocket motor than can boost the munition’s range out to 60 km.
The AASM is currently qualified for use on 250 kg Mk82 gravity bombs, although the company has previously raised the prospect of installing the PGM-kit on 125 kg, 500 kg, and 1,000 kg warheads.
Speaking to IHS Jane’s Sagem stated it is now in the midst of a study into the software and hardware adaptations needed to install and qualify AASM on different sizes of warhead. The company expects that this study should be completed by the end of the year, although any timeline for adding extra warhead sizes to the AASM’s portfolio will depend on customer needs.
There are currently three types of the AASM. All types of the Hammer feature hybrid inertial/GPS guidance as standard (SBU-38), with two additional see