Initial Operational Capability (IOC):
Also Known As: Mamba, SAMP/T Block 1 and Sol Air Moyenne Portee Terrestre
Leonardo-Finmeccanica, MBDA, SELEX ES and Thales
Parent System: SAMP/T
Initial Operational Capability (IOC): May 2008
Total Production: 15
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Description: The SAMP/T is a mobile, ground-based, air transportable, medium range air defense system designed to replace the Hawk air defense systems in the Italian and French Armed Forces. It comprises basically a ground control station/target engagement module, a 10 tons class truck-mounted Arabel radar, and up to six launcher vehicles carrying eight Aster 30 missiles each. Each Aster 30 missile is stored in a single sealed canister which eventually becomes its vertical launch ramp.
MBDA has designed the air defense system to operate in extreme clutter and electronic countermeasures environments. Interoperability with other NATO air defense systems is another key for the SAMP/T program. The entire system is expected to be airlifted by the latest NATO tactical transport aircraft such as the Airbus A400M and Lockheed-Martin C-130J Super Hercules deploying them anywhere around the globe.
The SAMP/T will protect the bases of the Italian and French air forces from a wide range of airborne threats. The Armies of Italy and France may use this air defense system to defend other high value assets as well as ground armored formations. In addition to aerodynamic threats such as fixed and rotary wing aircraft and cruise missiles, SAMP/T will be capable of defeating Theater Ballistic Missiles (TBMs) and Unmanned Combat Aerial Vehicles (UCAVs) thanks to Aster 30 missile advanced performance.
In July 2005, the SAMP/T fired successfully the first Aster 30 missile against a simulated combat aircraft by a C-22 drone at the French Defense Procurement Agency (DGA) test range at the Landais, France. Once completed the firings qualification campaign, the air defense system is expected to enter service with the Italian Army in 2007/2008 (the French Army may declare SAMP/T operational at the same time). Thereafter, the French Air Force and the French Army are expected to declare their SAMP/T systems operational by 2010.
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