Denel Dynamics Upgrading Umkhonto Missile Range

  • Our Bureau
  • 03:56 PM, July 7, 2014
  • 5137

Denel Dynamics is upgrading and improving its range of air defense, air-to-air and anti-armor missiles, Defence Web, an online news portal reported.

The Umkhonto naval surface-to-air missile has been sold to three users, including the South African Navy, Finland and an undisclosed customer. Denel is planning to deploy the Umkhonto in the ground based air defense system (GBADS) environment and has recently tested the weapon from a ground based launcher, destroying targets at a range of 20 km, an improvement of 5 km.

A ground based version would incorporate a Reutech radar and Denel command post and launcher. Tsepo Monaheng, CEO of Denel Dynamics, said there was interest in air defense, with expressions of interest from countries in North Africa, Asia, the Middle East, South America and Eastern Europe.

In order to increase the range of the Umkhonto, Denel Dynamics plans to develop the Umkhonto EIR (Extended Range, Infrared) missile and the Umkhonto LR (Long Range) is under discussion with partners. The company is exploring new generation motors and other technology for the EIR version as well as radar seekers planned for the Umkhonto LR. Ultimately Denel Dynamics wants to put a radar seeker onto the Umkhonto and give it a range of up to 60 km.

Denel Dynamics is also directing technology at warheads for surface targets for Umkhonto and aims to develop a surface target version with a 30 km range.

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