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13 Sep 23. Austria eyes German IRIS-T buy for nascent European ‘Sky Shield.’ Austria will purchase eight IRIS-T air defense launchers following its recent accession to the European Sky Shield Initiative earlier this year, the country’s defense minister said in a press conference on Tuesday.
The systems will be purchased jointly with Germany, Austrian media reported, a step that the ministry said would help keep costs lower for both countries. Training is set to take place in Germany.
In a joint press conference between the Austrian Defense Minister Klaudia Tanner and the head of the Austrian air force, Gerfried Promberger, the countries announced that a draft memorandum of understanding would be submitted by Germany for Austrian review “in the coming weeks.”
According to the Austrian defense minister, ESSI founding members Estonia and Latvia signed such a memorandum on Monday, Austrian paper Der Standard reported on Tuesday.
Austria is planning on purchasing four systems with a short range of up to 15 kilometers and four additional medium-range systems that can hit targets up to 50 kilometers away, Promberger said.
Austria, Sweden and Switzerland joined Germany’s European Sky Shield Initiative in 2023 along with Denmark. The project was first announced by German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in August of 2022, with an initial fifteen participants, all of whom are NATO members.
In light of the Ukraine war, this step was “absolutely necessary,” Tanner said.
The air-defense system built around the IRIS-T rocket, originally an air-to-air missile, is made by Diehl Defense and first tested in 2014, according to the company’s website.
No details were released on the proposed cost of Austria’s acquisition, with the ministry saying that this would depend on the outcome of negotiations. Formally, Germany will lead the negotiations and Austria will then purchase the eight systems from the German armed forces.
Tanner said money for the purchase would come from the buildup plan for ground-based air defense, which has a total volume of €2 bn, or $2.1 bn – though not all would be spent on the IRIS-T systems, she said. The ministry did not respond to Defense News’ request for comment by the end of the day Wednesday.
The Sky Shield initiative has in the past been the object of criticism, particularly by France and Italy, for relying too heavily on non-European parts and for ruling out the French-Italian SAMP-T system. While ESSI relies primarily on the German-made IRIS-T system for short and medium ranges, American and Israeli systems will be used for long-range air defense.
The Austrian defense ministry said they had no plans to purchase longer-range systems and said it expected the country would be covered by the air defense umbrella of fellow European states such as Germany.
In Austria, criticism has come particularly from the far-right Freedom Party, which criticizes becoming a member of ESSI as being incompatible with Austria’s legally enshrined “perpetual neutrality.”
Defense Minister Tanner said the criticism was “far-fetched,” noting that no legal experts had raised any such concerns now nor when a letter of intent was signed with Germany in July.
Additionally, “it’s not the first time that we are making joint procurements,” she said. (Source: Defense News Early Bird/Defense News)
11 Sep 23. Thales Missile On Target for Two Ground-Breaking Milestones. Thales Lightweight Multirole Missile was on display at this month’s Defence & Security Exhibition in London after a remarkable year in which the system has achieved a number of notable ‘firing firsts’ During 2023, the LMM system was successfully fired for the first time from a new versatile drone system capable of combat missions over land, sea and air, to bring the potential of unmanned air combat a step closer to reality.
Also, in a separate trial, the Royal Navy, Thales and QinetiQ recently completed a demanding series of firing tests with the Navy’s formidable Wildcat helicopter to test LMM to its maximum capability against a range of threats, including speedboats, jet skis and airborne drones.
Weighing in at only 13Kg with a speed of Mach 1.5, LMM was designed and built in Belfast to be capable of integrated onto a variety of firing platforms, including armoured vehicles, ships, helicopters and shoulder-launched by soldiers.
In a trial sponsored by the Rapid Capabilities Office of the Royal Air Force, the LMM proved its versatility further still when it was fired from a drone for the first time in a joint collaboration with drone experts from Flyby Technology.
Flyby had designed and built a sophisticated drone with Turkish partners called JACKAL, capable of vertical take-off and landing, to carry out battlefield air interdiction, close air support, engaging helicopters in flight and taking out key land targets, to denying the use of runways and roads.
Asked to brief the RAF, the Flyby team also contacted the Thales team in Belfast. Within a demanding six-week window, two operational JACKALs were built and LMMs were integrated and successfully fired from the drone in a UK-based trial.
The formidable combination of a JACKAL armed with LMM was on display on the Thales stand at H6-310.
Meanwhile, in an extensive firing trial in Wales, the Royal Navy’s experts in tactical development put the in-service missile through a series of demanding tests and scenarios to test the limits of its versatility and effectiveness.
Known as Martlet in Royal Navy operational service, the LMM was fitted to a Wildcat helicopter flown by 825 Naval Air Squadron (NAS) with 815 and 744 Squadrons in a trial organised by the Operational Advantage Centre (Maritime Warfare).
The trial – dubbed Triton’s Arrow – tested the Martlet missile and its ability to neutralise small, fast moving craft and drones and was also the squadron’s first ever helicopter air-to-air firings which was against a Banshee aerial drone target.
LMM will be at DSEi alongside the formidable STARStreak high velocity missile, another Belfast designed and manufactured system which is capable of Mach 3 and is the fastest type of missile of its kind in the world.
Philip McBride, Managing Director of Thales in Northern Ireland said: “Both LMM and STARStreak are operational proven and are proving to be best-in-class which is a testament to the skills we have invested in Northern Ireland.
“LMM has shown in these recent ground-breaking trials that it can be adapted for emerging platforms and new scenarios and both missiles have the ability to push the boundaries of capability to provide accurate defence against ever-changing threats.”
DSEi 2023 runs from September 12-15th and is held at the Excel Centre in London. It is a global showcase for innovation and capability for the defence and security industries. (Source: https://www.defense-aerospace.com/)
11 Sep 23. Denel’s 155mm T5-52 Self-Propelled Howitzer Achieved More than 60 Km Range. State-owned defence company Denel held a successful capability demonstration from 15 to 17 August 2023 at the Alkantpan Test Range in Copperton in the Northern Cape, showcasing the fact that the company is back in business. It also confirmed that Denel is still at the forefront of global technological advancement in the field of artillery and that it has recapacitated itself to be able to meet customer expectations in pursuit of world-class product offerings.
In addition, the objective was to re-establish and grow the relationship with end users, the local defence industry and international partners, with the intent of getting closer to the niche markets.
A primary feature of the demonstration was to showcase Denel’s high-performance 52-caliber ballistic system, the 155mm Truck-Mounted Gun System, the T5, and the Seeker 400 unmanned aerial vehicle systems (UAVS). The 155mm T5-52 artillery system has the latest technology with the capability to fire in excess of 60km in range with high accuracy and reliability.
Ten delegations from international countries were invited of which eight attended. They were joined at Alkantpan by the South African delegation led by the Deputy Minister of Public Enterprises, Mr Obed Bapela. Local participants included representatives from the Department of Defence (DoD), the Directorate Conventional Arms Control (DCAC), Armscor, the CSIR, the SA Army, Defence Intelligence, as well as a few local defence industry companies.
The T5-52 is designed to be highly mobile, with increased firepower and low operating cost. The Seeker 400 UAVS operates at a direct line-of-sight (LOS) range of up to 250 km with more than 10 hours over a target, providing a cruising speed of 150 km/h and up to 16 hours endurance with a multiple sensor payload capability of up to 100 kg.
Denel collaborated with its subsidiary company Rheinmetall Denel Munition (RDM) which supplied their suite of world-class artillery ammunition, while the mainstay of the capability demonstration, the T5-52 155mm Artillery Howitzer was provided by the Denel Land Systems. Present at the static display was the new 105mm Self-Propelled Howitzer (Ultimate), mounted on Denel Vehicle Systems’ RG41 8*8 Armoured Platform, the 105mm Light Experimental Ordnance (LEO/WEBBY) as well as the MST mounted on an RG32M mine hardened armoured patrol vehicle.
From Denel Dynamics, the Seeker 400 was on full display with demonstration flights on the first two days, by first completing the surveillance mission over the targets and confirming the grids once the firing started, it also provided the function of correction to the fall of shot through a live feed of the impact area. The main attraction was, however, the T5-52. Day one saw the demonstration of the stability, accuracy and consistency of the launcher system with, among others, the 35 degrees of left and right firing of the system. Day two saw the firing of the Multi Round Simultaneous Impact (MRSI) as well as a demonstration of the maximum rate of fire. The “shoot and scoot” was also demonstrated highlighting the in and out of action-reaction times.
Day three was reserved for the ultra-long-range firing where three velocity enhanced artillery projectiles (VLAP) rounds were fired at an objective area marked outside Alkantpan Test Range. The prevailing wind and other meteorological factors (with 130km/h head winds in the upper meteorological line) made for an interesting ultra-long-range firing. The first of the three shots achieved 60,4km with the second reaching 60,9km.
This was an undeniably proud moment for Denel as the ballistic test of the final shot for the day achieved an astonishing result of up to 61,29 kilometres range, the first of its kind in the world. This proved, once and for all, the superiority of the system combination between the T5-52 from Denel, and the RDM ammunition suite from the Assegai family.
The Deputy Minister shared his excitement on experiencing such a successful event as this showed that Denel is back to business and has the full support from the Government, its shareholder the Department of Public Enterprises, the Board and Management and will continue to work towards making Denel a sustainable and profitable company.
The international delegates also confirmed their excitement and expressed the view that they are always looking forward to working with Denel. Ms Fundiswa Skweyiya-Gushu, an Armscor Board member, also shared her happiness that Denel and Armscor are now moving on the right path to work towards a bright future together and push ahead with local programmes for the SANDF.
The demonstration received positive reviews from those in attendance. The event is a statement from Denel to the global market confirming its place as a global supplier of world-class aerospace, military and defence equipment. This capability demo has truly confirmed to the clients that Denel is, indeed, redefining its future. (Source: https://www.defense-aerospace.com/)
13 Sep 23. Raytheon UK set to receive and integrate UK’s first laser weapon system in October.
- High-energy laser weapon system is operationally ready and will be integrated onto a Wolfhound military vehicle
Raytheon UK is set to receive its first high-energy laser weapon system to be tested and integrated in the United Kingdom, marking a significant advancement in the understanding of how such systems can be fielded. Raytheon UK is the British unit of RTX’s (NYSE: RTX) Raytheon business.
Designed to stop aerial threats such as unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), this 15-kilowatt laser is the latest development in the UK Ministry of Defence’s Land Demonstrator programme. Raytheon UK was contracted in 2021 to develop and install the laser system on a UK Wolfhound armored vehicle.
“The arrival of this transformative technology is an important milestone in our collaboration with the MoD on using directed energy to address a variety of threats, from drones and UAVs to more complex missile systems,” said Julie Finlayson-Odell, managing director of weapons and sensors at Raytheon UK. “This system is a culmination of decades of investment, research and innovation and its arrival reflects our continued commitment to help fulfil a key strategic objective of the UK’s Integrated Review, which is to understand how directed energy weapons can safely and effectively operate alongside other elements of the UK’s armed forces.”
The high-energy laser weapon system has performed as designed in multiple field tests, including in difficult weather conditions with extreme heat, cold, rain, sleet and snow. During four days of live-fire exercises earlier this year in the United States, the system successfully acquired, tracked, targeted and destroyed dozens of drone targets in short-range attack, swarm attack and long-range threat scenarios.
Raytheon’s high-energy laser weapon system is compact, portable, can be installed on a variety of platforms, and it easily connects to other air defence systems. With deep, rechargeable magazine and minimal logistics, this laser weapon is an affordable and viable option to protect military and critical infrastructure, and rapidly defeat threats. The system offers a nearly infinite number of shots and precision accuracy with very low collateral damage, making it an affordable alternative to traditional munitions.
Raytheon UK is building on the success of U.S. investment, where a total of eight high-energy laser weapons have been delivered to the U.S. military. These systems have defeated more than 400 targets over 25,000 operational hours.
Raytheon has developed the enabling technologies, as well as complete and customizable systems, that enable military and civilian customers to defeat complex UAS threats in any environment. The company has developed integrated, high-performing sensors and cost-effective kinetic and non-kinetic effectors to defeat threats more efficiently. This provides the ability to select the right effectors against a range of threats.
The delivery of the first system to the UK comes as Raytheon UK officially opens its new, advanced laser integration centre in Livingston, Scotland. The centre, first announced in July 2022, focuses on the testing, fielding and maintenance of Raytheon’s defensive laser weapons and is a regional hub established to ensure that laser weapons can be quickly fielded, maintained and repaired. (Source: ASD Network)
14 Sep 23. A drone that fires laser-guided Brimstone missiles has been shown off at DSEI by the British Army. The Hydra 400 is a new generation of heavy-lift drone using hybrid propulsion technology.
Compact and portable, the drone can be transported in the back of a Hilux or similar and assembled ready for flight in six minutes.
The drone is powered by single spool jet turbines, producing 500N (50kg) thrust providing a maximum lift of 400kg.
Ministry of Defence (MoD) funding will be needed for Hydra Drones Ltd, the company that developed Hydra 400, to progress the concept. It is proposed that the Hydra 400 carry a lethal payload, the Brimstone missile developed by Stevenage-based MBDA, which is the strategic partner to the MoD for complex weapons
The Brimstone missile weighs 50kg, is 1.8 metres in length and has a 180mm diameter. It is guided by millimetric wave radar and semi-active laser.
Brimstone offers ‘one missile, multi-platform’ versatility and is designed to be integrated onto helicopters, fixed wing aircraft, including fast jets, land vehicles, naval platforms and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). The missile is battle proven with over 98% success rate in defeating static, moving and manoeuvring target sets including main battle tanks and other armoured vehicles.
General Sir Patrick Sanders, Army Chief of the General Staff, says:
“We are responding to the operating environment that we see in Ukraine. For example, I am struck by the fact that in the evolving Ukraine drone campaign, 40% of losses are attributed to pilot error. When the electro-magnetic spectrum is so heavily contested, automation fails, and the skill of the pilot predominates.
We need ‘war fighters’ – whether they are cyber specialist, drone pilots or infantry soldiers – to be stronger, faster, more intelligent and more resilient. By the end of this year, we will form a new UAS Group within a reorientated Joint Aviation Command, providing a focal point for industry, around which we intend to develop the next generation of UAS platforms in ever closer partnership.” (Source: UKDJ)
08 Sep 23. Framework Agreement for 27 Squadrons of Homar-A Rocket Launchers. On Monday September 11, at 12.00 in Toruń, Poland’s Minister of National Defense, Mariusz Błaszczak, approved the framework contract for the acquisition of M142 HIMARS missile launchers for the needs of the HOMAR-A system.
The subject of the framework agreement concluded between the State Treasury – Armament Agency and the US Government is the delivery of launchers for the needs of 27 rocket artillery squadrons of the HOMAR-A system, as well as logistics and training packages. The American side will also provide technical support. According to the adopted schedule, the start of deliveries is expected from 2025.
The implementation of the HOMAR-A program will include the signing of individual executive contracts with both American entities, including the supply of ammunition, and Polish entities.
Taking advantage of the experience resulting from the implementation of the first phase of the WISŁA program and previously implemented artillery programs, it is planned to award contracts to Polish industrial entities for the supply of command, technical security, ammunition and technical evacuation vehicles.
The implementation of the HOMAR-A program assumes the transfer of technology, ensuring maximum polonization of the system through the use of Polish elements, including primarily the integration of M142 HIMARS launcher elements with JELCZ chassis and the Polish TOPAZ integrated battle management system. It is also planned to acquire the technology of the selected missile used by the HIMARS systems.
The system allows hitting enemy targets within the operational area (up to 300 km).
The currently implemented contract for the supply of the first divisional fire module of HOMAR-A rocket launchers, in the “American configuration”, was signed in February 2019.
As a result, the Polish Armed Forces will receive 18 M142 HIMARS combat launchers and 2 for training, along with a supply of rocket ammunition GMLRS and ATACMS and school (LCRRPR). The order also includes command vehicles, ammunition vehicles and evacuation tractors, as well as logistic, training and technical support. Deliveries of elements for the first HOMAR-A squadron are currently being carried out and will last until the end of this year.
HOMAR-A rocket launchers will provide the necessary fire support for the Land Forces by performing deep fire strikes. The HOMAR-A system will use missile munitions (guided by inertial and satellite navigation systems) capable of precise destruction of targets at distances of up to 70 km, using GMLRS ammunition, and in the area of operational activities at distances of up to 300 km, using ATACMS missiles.
(Unofficial translation by Defense-Aerospace.com) (Source: https://www.defense-aerospace.com/ Polish Ministry of Defense;)
15 Sep 23. Konstrukta Defence’s 155mm BIA 6×6 Self-Propelled Howitzer (SPH) Makes its International Debut at DSEI 2023 London. A Slovak MOD Delegation, led by Deputy Defence Minister Marian Majer, is visiting DSEI London 2023 these days. Stated-owned Konstrukta Defence’s 155mm BIA 6×6 self-propelled howitzer (SPH) is making its international debut at the DSEI exhibition in London.
The BIA howitzer project combines the strengths of Konstrukta Defence’s 155mm ZUZANA 2 and EVA howitzers into one compact artillery system. Furthermore, this new howitzer gun system integrates the lessons learned from the ZUZANA 2’s operational deployment to Ukraine and the learnings from international military exercises as part of NATO’s enhanced Forward Presence (eFP) in Latvia.
Speaking from DSEI London 2023, Deputy Defence Minister Marian Majer said: “Making progress in sales and advances in development and innovation is great news for the Slovak defence industry. At this international trade show, we have confirmed that Slovakia has a lot to offer to the world as the Ministry of Defence remains committed to setting positive conditions for the expansion of our companies, including to promoting their products abroad.”
As Director General of Konstrukta – Defence Alexander Gurský explained, compared to the 155mm ZUZANA 2 SPH, the BIA comes lighter and more mobile with raised suspension for greater ground clearance, whilst maintaining the same firepower and other parameters. In contrast to the 155mm EVA SPH, the BIA carries a larger supply of ammunition, offers enhanced crew protection, and features upgraded automated reloading and fire control systems.
The 155mm BIA 6×6 self-propelled howitzer (SPH) prototype will be showcased at the International Defence Exhibition Bratislava (IDEB) 2023 on 3-5 October 2023.
(Source: https://www.defense-aerospace.com/ Slovak Republic Ministry of Defence;)
15 Sep 23. Archer Set to Arrive in UK. Gunners of 19 Regiment Royal Artillery are set to get their hands on the BAE Systems Archer wheeled artillery systems later this month when the first one arrives on Salisbury Plain.
This the first step of the programme to roll out the new guns and field operational gun batteries next year, according to a senior Royal Artillery officer at DSEI.
Speaking to Defence Eye, the officer said the intention is to ultimately allow the Royal Artillery to deploy a battery of the new guns to Estonia as part of the UK-led NATO battlegroup in the Baltic State.
After all the Archers are delivered, 19 Regiment RA will be the lead unit with the weapon and the other close support regiment in 1 Deep Strike Recce Brigade, 1st Regiment Royal Horse Artillery (1 RHA), will become the main operator of the rump fleet of AS90 155mm self-propelled guns.
Once 19 Regiment RA is fully up to speed on the new weapon, which features automatic loading technology, it is intended to train up personnel from 1 RHA to also operate Archers so a sustainable rotation of batteries to Estonia can be established, said the officer.
The introduction of the Archer is prompting the Royal Artillery to think about how it will operate the wheeled weapon in the face of active enemy counter-battery capabilities. The officer said particular effort is being devoted to looking at the supply of ammunition to gun batteries.
Eventually it is hoped that 19 Regiment and 1 RHA will be re-equipped with whatever weapon is selected under the Mobile Fires Platform (MFP) later this decade. Questions have been raised about whether the Royal Artillery’s 1990s vintage fleet of AS90s could be sustained in-service until the MFP comes on line. The Royal Artillery officer was optimistic about keeping the remaining AS90s in-service through a mix of “Christmas treeing” spare parts off surplus guns and bespoke re-manufacturing of key components. (Source: Defence Eye)
15 Sep 23. Mossberg develops ‘Vanisher’ shotgun for UK requirement. Mossberg’s new highly compact ‘Vanisher’ breaching shotgun was designed at the request of a specialist UK-based unit, company representatives told Janes at DSEI 2023 in London.
Based on the 500/590 series of 12-bore, pump-action shotguns, the company made some notable changes to the design to meet the units very specific requirements.
The very strict overall length limitation meant that the use of the traditional tubular magazine had to be abandoned in favour of a polymer, dual-column, single-feed five-round detachable box magazine. For the Vanisher, the tube magazine is non-functional, and only serves to guide the pump grip. Without the box magazine, the shotgun’s capacity would have only been two in the magazine and one in the chamber.
Further changes include a stock-less pistol grip, an ambidextrous safety lever above the pistol grip, and an index finger operable action release lever. The pump grip features M-LOK interface rails, and the barrel has a breaching type muzzle device. A short length of MIL-STD-1913 rail is present atop the receiver for the mounting of a sight. The Vanisher can only feed and chamber 12/70 shells. (Source: Janes)
15 Sep 23. Milanion NTGS integrates Alakran-S mortar on Polaris MRZR Alpha. Milanion New Technologies Global Systems (NTGS) and Polaris Government & Defense publicly displayed the Alakran-S 81 mm mortar system mounted on a Polaris MRZR Alpha 4 4×4 vehicle for the first time at the DSEI 2023 exhibition in London.
The Alakran-S (the ‘S’ denoting ‘small’) made its debut at IDEX 2023 mounted on a commercial Polaris platform, the RZR all-terrain vehicle (ATV). Unlike the RZR, the MRZR Alpha is a purpose-built military platform that possesses greater cross-country mobility and an increased payload, both of which are expected to make the combination more attractive to military customers. (Source: Janes)
14 Sep 23. KNDS, the European leader in land defense, and Elbit Systems have today signed a teaming agreement to address the growing needs for precision rocket artillery capabilities in Europe as well as NATO nations. The ceremony took place between representatives of KNDS and of Elbit Systesm at the DSEI exhibition in London. The agreement formalizes and implements their strategic cooperation form the next generation rocket artillery system, known as EuroPULS.
EuroPULS synergetically combines capabilities from KNDS as a systems house with those of the technology group Elbit Systems. It will form the basis for a modularly scalable and flexible artillery system that can be integrated to fire from any mobility platform with pinpoint accuracy and safety. The open EuroPULS concept does not exclude any provider of respective missiles from cooperation enabling EuroPULS users to employ those.
The transformation of the established Elbit PULS artillery rocket system into the flexible EuroPULS system is being carried out using the unique European capabilities of lead system integrator KNDS. Key success factors for transformation are KNDS’s modular fire control system and the modular architecture of the Elbit’s launcher. Morever, the EuroPULS system will provide capabilities to fire the full spectrum of Elbit’s precision guided and training rocket artillery munitions from any mobility platform.
14 Sep 23. Paramount’s Mwari racking up flying hours in Mozambique while weapons integration progresses. As the launch customer for the Mwari intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance (ISR) and strike aircraft, Mozambique has accumulated over 70 hours of flying on the type, which Paramount is hoping to sell to other African and European customers.
This was revealed by Paramount Aerospace Industries (PAI) at the Defence, Security Equipment International (DSEI) 2023 exhibition currently underway in London. The company said with deliveries underway to the Mozambican Air Force, it has been recently revealed that the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has ordered several Mwari platforms. Mozambique has ordered three aircraft, and the DRC six.
Paramount at DSEI gave an update on the Mwari’s integration of advanced weapons systems. Weapons testing and certification are expected to commence towards the end of the fourth quarter of this year/early first quarter of 2024, to be undertaken by Paramount Aerospace Industries, “ensuring vertical integration and manufacture of the latest rendition of the company’s own intellectual property (IP).” The specifics of newly adopted mission and weapons systems will be disclosed at a later date.
Paramount said additional integration of modern command, control and communications base systems architecture further enables the Mwari to serve as a critical link between aircraft, ground forces and forward-operating bases (FOBs). “Advanced technologies are leveraged to transmit next-level intelligence and real-time analysis, ensuring that the Mwari can play a key role in coordinating responses, redefining the very nature of precision-strike,” Paramount said in a statement.
Armed overwatch market report
On the first day of DSEI, Paramount commissioned and published a market intelligence report revealing that global air capability spending will reach over $476bn over the next five years, with the Armed Overwatch/ISR market estimated to provide $32.3bn of opportunities.
“The market report further emphasises the changing threat perceptions in continental Europe and beyond. Increased readiness against near-peer scenarios suggests that traditional 4th and 5th generation fighters will have very limited applicability to modern-day counter-insurgency operations,” Paramount stated.
“Made for portable production, the Mwari creates a sustainable security solution for any nation, no longer reliant on foreign powers. We are pleased to showcase at DSEI 2023 the Mwari’s critical role in an inter-connected battlefield, providing forces on the ground and in the air with a force multiplier competitive advantage,” Steve Griessel, Paramount Global CEO, said.
Speaking at DSEI, Paramount founder Ivor Ichikowtiz said Paramount is aiming to sell the Mwari to European countries. “Absolutely we believe that a lot of NATO countries are going to have operational requirements for this class of aircraft,” Ichikowitz told Janes. “We know Portugal [has a light attack and ISR requirement], and we are talking to a number of smaller NATO countries who have limited air force capabilities. There are a lot of countries that have requirements for aircraft like [Embraer/Sierra Nevada Corporation] Super Tucano, but they want a broader capability.”
Janes noted that Austria and the Netherlands have an interest in the Mwari class of aircraft in addition to Portugal.
The Mwari is the first new clean-sheet manned military aircraft in South Africa since the Rooivalk attack helicopter. First flight of the Experimental Demonstrator (XDM) was in July 2014, followed by the Advanced Demonstrator (ADM), which was built for testing weapons and mission systems.
The Mwari is marketed as a relatively inexpensive alternative to high-end military aircraft for surveillance, maritime patrol and counter-insurgency operations. It can also be used for training. The Mwari has been designed to easily perform multiple missions thanks to an innovative Interchangeable Mission Systems Bay (IMSB), located in the belly of the aircraft, providing near-endless sensor and payload options which can be integrated and be swapped out in less than two hours. Open-architecture and flexible systems allows for the quick and low-cost integration of new pods, avionics, cargo, special mission equipment, weapons and sensors.
The PT6 turboprop-powered Mwari has a service ceiling of up to 31 000 feet, and offers a maximum cruise speed of 250 knots, a mission range of up to 550 nautical miles with ordinance and an overall endurance of up to 6.5 hours. The aircraft also offers a short take-off and landing (STOL) capability, with retractable landing gear optimised for both semi and unprepared airstrips or sites.
Sensors and equipment that have already been fitted to the aircraft include Hensoldt’s Argos II electro-optical gimbal, Paramount Advanced Technologies’ 420 sensor ball, Thales’s Avni thermal reconnaissance system, Sysdel’s MiniRaven radar warning receiver, and Reutech’s ACR510 radio, amongst others. Future options could include a synthetic aperture radar (SAR).
Mwari has been designed with portable production in mind. The aircraft could, depending on customer requirements, be exported in kit format for final assembly in customer countries and can easily integrate into supply chains around the world, enabling scalable mass production.
14 Sep 23. French-British underwater drone proves de-mining ability, says Thales. Recent sea trials of a remotely operated underwater vehicle proved it is capable of neutralizing naval mines, a new milestone for the Franco-British Maritime Mine Countermeasures program, French firm Thales announced Wednesday.
The program’s prime contractor and lead system integrator successfully demonstrated this final component of its system for the MMCM program, dubbed SLAM-F in France.
The sea trials took place remotely from the company’s command center in Brest, France, alongside representatives of the French Navy, the French defense procurement agency DGA, the British Royal Navy and the U.K. Defence Ministry, as well as the Organisation for Joint Armament Co-operation, according to a Thales news release. OCCAR is an international weapons management group.
The Thales operations center controlled the systems with the support of French Navy personnel.
The trials, which were “recently” held, demonstrated the ability of Thales’ M-Cube mission management system to relocate and identify mines at sea, after which the underwater drone successfully installed exercise charges on a bottom mine and a moored mine; the latter are deployed when the water is too deep for bottom mines.
France and Britain first launched the MMCM program in 2015 with a contract signing between Thales and OCCAR, intending to demonstrate and qualify a novel, fully integrated, unmanned mine countermeasures system of systems. The goal is for MMCM to replace all current mine warfare platforms, including Tripartite-class mine hunters, sonar towing vessels and diver support vessels.
Per the French Armed Forces Ministry, one MMCM system architecture comprises two surface drones — one of which is equipped with a towed sonar and the other with a remotely operated robot — and two underwater drones responsible for detecting, classifying and localizing the mines. The remotely operated robot makes it possible to identify and neutralize mines.
Thales serves as the overall project manager of the system as well as the sonar manufacturer, while ECA Group — which now operates as Exail — developed the underwater drones.
Those drones will be capable of recognizing submerged objects with very high resolution thanks to Thales’ “multi-aspect sonar,” the ministry previously said.
The sonar can take images from three different angles in one pass, allowing the operator to more easily and quickly characterize an object.
The MMCM system will also be able to detect, identify and neutralize mines up to 300 meters (984 feet) deep, compared to 120 meters (394 feet) today, the ministry has said.
The first two prototype MMCM systems were delivered to the French and British navies in 2021 and 2022, according to Thales. The two services will take delivery of the six series-produced systems in 2024 and 2025, for a total of eight systems split between the two nations.
At the 2022 Euronaval conference held outside of Paris, French military officials announced the MMCM program will align itself with a separate Belgian-Dutch de-mining program meant to deliver new mine hunter vessels and unmanned systems, dubbed the Belgian-Dutch Mine Countermeasures system. (Source: Defense News)
11 Sep 23. Boeing [NYSE: BA] will develop and test technologies for a hypersonic interceptor prototype for DARPA’s Glide Breaker program as part of a four-year effort. Boeing will perform computational fluid dynamics analysis, wind tunnel testing and evaluation of aerodynamic jet interaction effects during flight tests.
“Hypersonic vehicles are among the most dangerous and rapidly evolving threats facing national security,” said Gil Griffin, executive director of Boeing Phantom Works Advanced Weapons. “We’re focusing on the technological understanding needed to further develop our nation’s counter-hypersonic capabilities and defend from future threats.”
Glide Breaker is intended to inform the design and development of future hypersonic interceptors, which could destroy a threat traveling at least five times the speed of sound in the upper atmosphere during what’s known as the “glide phase” of flight. The Boeing-led development and testing will provide the foundation for future operational glide-phase interceptors capable of defending against these sophisticated and evolving hypersonic threats.
“This phase of the Glide Breaker program will determine how factors like hypersonic airflow and firing jet thrusters to guide the vehicle affect system performance at extreme speed and altitude in a representative digital environment,” said Griffin. “We’re operating on the cutting edge of what’s possible in terms of intercepting an extremely fast object in an incredibly dynamic environment.”
08 Sep 23. LongShot Air-To-Air Combat Drone Bid Won By General Atomics (excerpt). The U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency has picked General Atomics to build an air-launchable uncrewed aircraft capable of firing air-to-air missiles as part of its LongShot program. General Atomics says that it hopes to begin flight testing this drone, which could give fighters and bombers new flexibility to engage aerial threats across longer distances, before the end of the year.
General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. (GA-ASI) revealed its selection as the sole awardee for the next phase of the LongShot program late [Thursday] evening. The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency announced that it awarded its first round of LongShot contracts to General Atomics, Lockheed Martin, and Northrop Grumman, back in 2021, but work on the project had actually begun the previous year.
“Begun in 2020, General Atomics was competitively awarded a contract to develop DARPA’s concept for disruptive air combat operations through demonstration of an air-to-air weapons capable air vehicle,” C. Mark Brinkley, GA-ASI’s Senior Director of Strategic Communications & Marketing, said in a statement. “The concept seeks to significantly increase engagement range and mission effectiveness of current 4th gen fighters and air-to-air missiles.”
“Over the last three years, GA-ASI has iterated on numerous vehicle designs to optimize performance and will begin flight testing in December 2023,” Brinkley added. “The testing will validate basic vehicle handling characteristics and lay the foundation for follow-on development and testing.”
New concept art that GA-ASI included with its announcement tonight, seen at the top of this story and below, shows a dramatically different design from one the company showed two years ago. The uncrewed aircraft in the new rendering has an elongated fuselage, small canards at the front, reverse-swept main wings toward the rear, and an inverted V-shaped twin-tail configuration. The main wings look to be designed to pop out after launch. It also has a small streamlined tail-like extension behind a top-mounted dorsal engine air intake and a chined nose. (end of excerpt)
(Click here for the full story, on the War Zone website:)
https://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zone/longshot-air-to-air-combat-drone-bid-won-by-general-atomics (Source: https://www.defense-aerospace.com/ The War Zone)
13 Sep 23. Thales demonstrates mine neutralisation capability of remotely operated underwater vehicle on Maritime Mine Countermeasures (MMCM) programme.
- In the latest milestone on the Franco-British Maritime Mine Counter Measures (MMCM) programme, Thales has successfully completed an at-sea demonstration of the ability of the world’s first fully integrated drone-based mine countermeasures system to locate, identify and neutralise sea mines.
- This system of systems uses the fully proven M-Cube mission management system (MMS) to integrate and control multiple uncrewed surface and underwater vehicles equipped with high-performance sonars and other systems, and will provide the UK Royal Navy and the French Navy with the world’s first complete drone-based mine countermeasures capability.
- Thales is a world leader in uncrewed mine countermeasures. The latest demonstration confirms the company’s role as a reliable innovation partner empowering naval forces to develop their strategic capabilities today and into the future.
During sea trials conducted remotely from the command centre in Brest, France, Thales has successfully demonstrated the performance of the final component of its innovative mine countermeasures system – the remotely operated underwater vehicle – and its ability to neutralise sea mines. The MMCM programme relies on the very latest developments in autonomous technologies, artificial intelligence, cybersecurity and uncrewed systems to handle challenging operational scenarios as defined by the French Navy and the Royal Navy. The first two prototype MMCM systems were delivered incrementally following at-sea qualification in conditions up to and including sea state 41. Since the end of 2021, the Navies have been conducting operational evaluations, and will take delivery of the six series-produced systems in 2024 and 2025.
As prime contractor and lead systems integrator on the MMCM programme, and working with an extensive network of partners, Thales has further consolidated its global leadership in drone-based mine countermeasures.
The successful trials represent the latest milestone on the programme. Conducted with representatives of the French Navy, the French defence procurement agency, the Royal Navy, the UK Ministry of Defence and OCCAr, the sea trials demonstrated the system’s ability to relocate and identify sea mines, and the remotely operated underwater vehicle successfully installed exercise charges on a bottom mine and a moored mine2 so that the neutralization cycle could be completed. The demonstrations were conducted in realistic conditions at sea, with the Thales operations centre in Brest controlling the systems remotely and performing the functions of the Portable Operation Centre (POC) with the support of personnel from the Marine nationale.
This latest technological achievement is a further endorsement of Thales’s expertise in naval systems engineering, high-performance sonars, artificial intelligence, cybersecurity and autonomous technologies, and demonstrates the ability of its M-Cube mission management system to integrate a range of different types of sub-systems. It promises to redefine the mine countermeasures concept of operations by ensuring that naval personnel remain outside the mine danger area. Human operators rely on advanced systems to detect, classify, locate, identify and neutralise even the most sophisticated and best concealed mine threats with a high level of precision and reliability. A latest-generation processing and visualisation system powered by artificial intelligence algorithms performs real-time (in-stride) and/or post-mission analysis of the sonar data.
Integration of the first series-produced subsystems within the overall system of systems has begun at the Brest site, with delivery to the Navies scheduled for early 2024. These subsystems include uncrewed surface vehicles deploying either the TSAM towed array sonar or the remotely operated underwater vehicle (ROV) for mine identification and neutralisation. Mission preparation, monitoring, control and evaluation are conducted by operators in the Portable Operation Centre (POC) or the Shore Operation Centre (SOC).
“Ever since the contract was signed in 2015, our teams and partners have been investing their skills, energy and passion to ensure that Thales can step up to the technological challenges of this extraordinary programme. We are fully committed to providing the French Navy and the Royal Navy with the most innovative technologies in order to protect their strategic assets and keep naval personnel out of harm’s way. These latest milestones offer further proof of our unflagging determination to meet these goals.” Gwendoline Blandin-Roger, Vice President, Underwater Systems, Thales.
13 Sep 23. Sweden seeks details on missile systems to upgrade Amphibious Corps. Sweden is seeking to upgrade its amphibious battalions with short-range, anti-ship missile or surface-to-surface missile systems to strike targets at sea and on land as well as ensure the security of its maritime assets. In early September, the Swedish Defence Materiel Administration, or FMV, released a request for information regarding a requirement made by the Swedish military to enhance the coastal defense capabilities of the Amphibious Corps.
The RFI serves as the first step in the country’s acquisition process to gather detailed information from industry regarding anti-ship missile or surface-to-surface missile systems, according to the notice.
A contract notice is expected to follow about June 2024.
Hans Jørn Kongelf, vice president for business development within the missile systems division at Norwegian defense company Kongsberg, told Defense News that if Sweden invites the company to take part in the planned tender, the firm will “most likely participate.”
“We are obviously interested, and we are looking forward to looking into the request for information that Sweden could release with regards to this tender,” he said at the DSEI conference in London, which runs Sept. 12-15.
Kongelf added that Kongsberg is confident FMV will like its Naval Strike Missile offering both in terms of price and technical aspects.
“The U.S. Marine Corps selected the NSM. We have shown that, if the price-capacity ratio is the main factor to be considered in the decision-making process, our product wins,” according to the company representative.
Kongelf also said the company would most likely be locked in a fierce competition against Sweden’s defense industry for the potential missile order.
When asked about the RFI, Conal Walker, a media relations manager at Swedish firm Saab, said the business is “aware of it and will look into it, as we would in any other potential defense requirement.”
The Swedish Navy already operates several variants of the the Saab-made RBS15 missile.
This potential order could be part of the FMV’s ongoing efforts to upgrade and expand the capacities of the Amphibious Corps. In May 2023, the agency awarded a contract to acquire eight new vessels fitted with artillery capabilities to local shipbuilder Swede Ship Marine AB.
(Source: Defense News)
12 Sep 23. MBDA’s SPEAR-EW moves to the next stage. MBDA has received additional funding from the UK Ministry of Defence to accelerate the development of the SPEAR-EW stand-in jammer.
SPEAR-EW is a novel electronic warfare effector designed to confuse and suppress enemy air defence, protecting friendly forces and acting as a significant force multiplier.
The additional Rapid Design Phase funding will accelerate SPEAR-EW’s development, maturing all its key sub-systems, and perform mission and planning evaluation.
Chris Allam, Managing Director of MBDA UK, said: “SPEAR-EW will be a true game-changer for the suppression and defeat of enemy air defences. As we have seen lately, air defence networks are exceptionally hard to operate against with today’s toolkit: SPEAR-EW is the key that will enable allied air forces to unlock this challenge and gain air superiority”.
Dean Pask, Spear Senior Responsible Owner at the MOD, commented on the commitment: “By embracing collaborative partnering, agile methods, and strategic technology, we are steadfastly dedicated to ensuring that our front line commands receive critical capabilities in the most effective and efficient manner possible”.
The weapon’s electronic warfare payload is being developed by Leonardo and utilises the company’s Digital Radio Frequency Memory (DRFM) technology. This technology is mature, was proven effective in trials and will deliver the advanced sensing and electronic attack capabilities of SPEAR-EW. Operators will be able to use SPEAR-EW to jam enemy radar systems as well as deliver more subtle electronic warfare effects such as creating decoy targets to draw the attention of threat systems away from crewed aircraft or effectors.
Iain Bancroft, SVP Electronic Warfare at Leonardo UK, said: “SPEAR-EW will incorporate a world-class electronic warfare payload, designed and manufactured here in Luton, UK. Based on our experience providing on-board jamming capabilities for the Eurofighter Typhoon and, more recently, off-board jamming in the form of our BriteCloud expendable active decoy, our technology can reliably beat current threats while remaining adaptable for the threats of the future”.
SPEAR-EW utilises the same airframe as MBDA’s SPEAR miniature cruise missile being manufactured for the Royal Air Force. This commonality has reduced the development costs for SPEAR-EW and is also enabling a joint integration/launcher solution, reducing logistics burden and offering a high load-out potential.
MBDA is a unique multi-national European group, a world-leader in the field of complex weapon systems, playing a key role in keeping nations safe. Created in the spirit of international co-operation, MBDA and its 14,000+ employees work together to support the national sovereignty of France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK, and their allies worldwide. As an accelerator for innovation, MBDA is the only European group capable of designing and manufacturing complex weapons to meet the full range of current and future operational requirements of the three armed forces (land, sea and air). Airbus (37.5%), BAE Systems (37.5%) and Leonardo (25%) jointly own MBDA.
15 Sep 23. SpearUAV introduces multi-launch system for Viper 300. SpearUAV has developed a unit capable of launching multiple Viper 300 loitering munitions. Speaking to Janes at DSEI 2023 in London, where the unit was debuted, the company’s chief business development officer, Itamar Ben-Tovim, said that work on the Multi Canister Launcher (MCL) commenced around two years ago in response to customer demand and internal recognition of the operational benefits of the capability.
In its present form the MCL combines four of the Viper 300’s encapsulated launchers, but Ben-Tovim said that this could be scaled to include more or fewer units.
Trials to date have been both in-house and involving the Israeli military and have seen the MCL integrated on a range of manned and unmanned vehicles, including what Ben-Tovim said was an in-service Israeli main battle tank – although he could not confirm, this is presumably an Israel Defense Forces’ Merkava.
The MCL can launch Viper 300 air vehicles individually, sequentially, or simultaneously, Ben-Tovim explained, with the operator able to do so from within the host vehicle or remotely. (Source: Janes)
17 Aug 23. Australian Army confirms live fire of remote-control vehicle
The Australian Army has confirmed a technological leap with the firing of a remote weapon system from a remote-controlled vehicle for the first time.
The Australian Defence Force was able to fire a remote weapon system from an Australian Army M113AS4 armoured logistics vehicle during human-machine team exercise at Puckapunyal Military Area, Victoria, on 7 June this year.
The exercise was conducted by the Australian Army’s Robotic and Autonomous Systems Implementation and Coordination Office (RICO) with plans to converge several emerging technology projects into a simulated future warfare environment.
During the first Land Autonomous Systems and Teaming demonstration, RICO was able to operate drones, robots, and optionally crewed combat vehicles fitted with remote weapon systems within a conventional combined arms team to defeat a simulated enemy.
Two airborne drone groups were used for real-time surveillance and communications jamming against a simulated enemy position before engagement by enhanced M113AS4s optionally crewed combat vehicles and a third wave of armed (simulated) drones from above. Using image recognition and context awareness, drones would then identify dead, injured, and surrendering enemy personnel while supported by tanks.
It’s understood the technology used in the exercise included W&E Platt’s Remotely Operated Weapons Platform and Electro Optic Systems’ R400 MK2 remote weapon system.
RICO director Colonel Robin Smith said his organisation helps Army stay ahead of the game so soldiers and Australia aren’t exposed to a more capable adversary.
“With the rate of innovation that’s going on across the world, we need to understand both how to use and protect against these technologies,” COL Smith said.
28 Aug 23. Silent and deadly: Australian directed energy pitched against hypersonics. Canberra-based defence company Electro Optic Systems has pitched a “silent and deadly” directed energy laser system during a live fire demonstration earlier this week.
Members of the media (including Defence Connect) and university staff attended the kinetic and directed energy counter-drone live fire demonstration at Klondyke Range Complex in western NSW on 25 August.
During the presentation, the company’s Titanis water-cooled, 34-kilowatt (light energy) laser directed energy system was successfully tested against unmanned aerial vehicles and 8mm-thick steel plates at a distance of around one kilometre. The system operates out of a 20-foot container testbed.
Matt Jones, EOS executive vice-president defence systems, who attended the demonstration, said the system is designed for counter drone operations but can be scaled up or down for a range of applications including potentially against hi-speed missiles or hypersonics.
“Directed energy as a technology has a range of applications from low-power systems for counter sensor operations, all the way up through to very high-powered systems, which can deliver counter ballistic missiles, counter hypersonics, and even counter space,” he said.
“What we’re seeing here is a very small sliver of what you can do with directed energy. The employment scenario drives the requirements of the deployment system and directed energy has some key technical advantages.
“High speed targets are not high speed when you compare it to the speed of light.
“Other systems where you’re trying to either fire a missile or fire a round at something that’s moving very, very fast make it very hard to hit that target.
“But when you’re firing something that’s moving at the speed of light, that problem is much easier. It’s then about how much energy can you get onto the target.”
It’s understood that the event held earlier this month is a precursor before government officials, VIPs, and international observers are shown the test in the following weeks.
“We have interest from Europe, the Middle East, Southeast Asia, North America. There’s a mixture of government officials, defence primes, and UN organisations with particular interest in directed energy development, that are coming to see the demonstration capability,” Jones said.
“The United States of America has been heavily invested in this capability for [the] last three years, we’ve invested $30 m of company money in the development of the technology today.
“We’re very confident that will then turn into orders and partnerships in the global domain and we’ve got some key competitive advantages. The technology that we’re demonstrating is world class.”
Jones said the company had not currently confirmed any contracts for the directed energy system and is around 12 months away from a soldier-proof deployable battlefield system.
“There is a huge amount of interest in adopting and deploying directed energy; and we expect off the back of this (demonstration) that we can have further discussions about future contracts,” he said.
“What we’re doing here is demonstrating that the technology works, that we can defeat drones with directed energy.
“Customers may well come to us with different concepts and ideas saying, ‘We actually want it on a tracked vehicle, in a container or we want on the back of a buggy to provide local counter drone capability’.”
(Source: Defence Connect)
15 Sep 23. Taiwan develops new rifle to replace T91 rifles. The Taiwanese Ministry of National Defense’s (MND’s) Armaments Bureau has developed a new 5.56 mm rifle called XT112 assault rifle to replace the Republic of China Army’s (RoCA’s) in-service T91 assault rifles.
The bureau showcased the rifle at the Taipei Aerospace & Defense Technology Exhibition 2023 (TADTE 2023) held in Taipei from 14 to 16 September.
Under development by the 205th Arsenal of the Armaments Bureau, which is based in the southern city of Kaohsiung, the new rifle is designed to provide enhanced performance and stability over the T91.
Frank Wang, the gun engineer from the 205th Arsenal, told Janes at the show that the barrel accuracy of the XT112 is 30% higher than the T91.
The new gun has reduced weight and vibrations as its development methodology is different from the T91, Frank said.
According to the Armaments Bureau marketing material, the rifle has four shooting modes: safe, semi‐automatic, two‐round burst, and fully automatic. (Source: Janes)
15 Sep 23. Romania considers joining French-led Mistral procurement program. Romania is considering joining France, Belgium, Estonia, Cyprus and Hungary in the Mistral procurement program, to bolster its air defenses and border security against possible Russian aggression.
Over the last week, the security situation in Romania has become more turbulent than normal, with the finding of drone debris near the country’s border with Ukraine. The discovery comes amid Russian attacks on Ukraine that have taken place close to this area.
Bucharest has been looking to increase its air defense capabilities for some time now, in particular through previous and ongoing tenders to purchase electronic warfare and counter-drone systems. In recent weeks, the country has turned its attention to Mistral, through which it may obtain the Mistral 3 missile produced by MBDA, a France-based defense firm owned by BAE Systems, Airbus and Leonardo. a Romanian Ministry of Defense source told Defense News.
“MBDA is aware of Romania’s interest in joining this procurement process and is engaged in ongoing discussions with them,” Julien Watelet, a company spokesperson told Defense News on Sept. 14.
The joint acquisition for the Mistral 3 was launched with the letter of intent signed on June 19 during the Paris Air Show by France, Belgium, Estonia, Cyprus and Hungary. Productio of the Mistral will double to about 40 units a month next year.
Watelet added that the program could benefit from the support of the EU and allow scale economies to be achieved, “as to incentivise member states to procure defense products jointly while reinforcing the European Defense Technological and Industrial Base competitiveness.”
It remains unclear how many systems will be delivered to each country and the cost of these purchases. The French-led project is being overseen by the ministry’s procurement arm Direction Generale de l’Armement on behalf of the partner countries.
The Romanian defense official added that the country is also open to other proposals and in the process of assessing additional C-UAS systems both from local and international manufacturers.
In June, Civitas Systems, a Romanian company specializing in border security systems, was awarded a $8.5 m contract from the government to supply an undisclosed number of counter-drone units through the country’s National Recovery and Resilience Plan. (Source: Defense News)
15 Sep 23. NCSIST develops enhanced variants of Sky Bow III SAM system. Taiwan’s National Chung-Shan Institute of Science & Technology (NCSIST) has developed two upgraded variants of the Sky Bow III surface-to-air missile (SAM) system, a spokesperson for NCSIST told Janes at the Taipei Aerospace & Defense Technology Exhibition 2023 (TADTE 2023) held in Taipei from 14 to 16 September.
The new variants are named Strong Bow I and Strong Bow II, the spokesperson said.
Sky Bow III is an air-defence missile that can intercept targets at an altitude of 45 km, whereas Strong Bow I and Strong Bow II can intercept at altitudes of 70 km and 100 km respectively, the spokesperson added.
The propulsion system and anti-jamming capabilities of the new missiles are also upgraded, the spokesperson said.
The Strong Bow I has completed testing and is ready for mass production, while the Strong Bow II is still under testing, the spokesperson added. (Source: Janes)
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