MBDA To Upgrade Aster 30 Block 1 Missile System

  • Our Bureau
  • 11:42 AM, January 18, 2016
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MBDA To Upgrade Aster 30 Block 1 Missile System
Aster 30 Block 1 Missile System (Image: latribune.fr)

MBDA has won a contract to develop an upgraded version of the Aster 30 Block 1 long-range air-defence missile.

The contract to develop a new system named Aster 30 Block 1 New Technology (Aster 30 B1NT) was announced by the French defence procurement agency (DGA) on 14 January.

The contract also includes production of Aster 30 B1NT missiles for the French Air Force, which uses the Aster 30 Block 1 in its land-based SAMP/T surface-to-air missile system.

Various media reports state that the contract is worth EUR400 million (USD436 million).

An MBDA spokesperson was quoted as saying by IHS Jane's that the upgrade would enable the Aster 30 B1NT to "engage the whole range of short-range ballistic missiles [SRBMs, of up to 1,000 km range] and some segment of the medium-range ballistic missile [MRBM] domain".

The main element of the B1NT upgrade is the inclusion of a new high-resolution Ka-band (26.5-40 GHz) active radar seeker to replace the existing Ku-band (2-18 GHz) seeker on the current Aster 30 Block 1 missile. The shorter wavelength of the new Ka-band seeker, and accompanying new missile calculator, will provide the B1NT with a longer target-acquisition range combined with its better angular resolution than its predecessor, according to MBDA.

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