Initial Operational Capability (IOC):
and United Kingdom
Avio, MBDA*, Roxel, Sagem Defense Securite, SELEX Galileo, Simmel Difesa and Thales (*) lead contractor
There are no reviews so far
Description: The ASTER modular family of vertically launched missiles have been designed to meet the high demanding requirements of the emerging air threats such as aircraft, UAVs, helicopters and specially missiles. The ASTER missiles can be installed on ground- and sea-based platforms. They feature hit-to-kill capability, a very valuable skill against ballistic missiles. The missile family entered service in 2002 with the French Armed Forces. The ASTER 15 and ASTER 30 are integrated on the SAAM (ASTER 15), PAAMS (ASTER 15 and ASTER 30) and SAMP/T (ASTER 30) air defense systems. These systems will be employed by the armed forces of France, Italy and the United Kingdom.
The two-stage ASTER missiles are provided with two different solid propellant boosters resulting in the ASTER 15 and the ASTER 30 models. The 'Pif-Paf' control system enables the ASTER missile to counter high maneuverable missiles achieving a direct impact (hit-to-kill). The 'Pif-Paf' propulsion combines conventional aerodynamic control with control by gas jets acting through the centre of gravity of the missile. Until mid-course the guidance of an ASTER missile is based on the Inertial Navigation System (INS) updated through an uplink, in the terminal phase the guidance is provided by an active Radiofrequency seeker. The final stage of the ASTER missile is a 'dart' equipped with the seeker, a sustainer motor, a proximity fuze and a blast fragmentation warhead.
The ASTER 15 is a short range missile intended for self-defense (point defense) purposes against highly maneuverable threats. The ASTER 15 is integrated on the SAAM and beginning in 2006 in the PAAMS system. The SAAM is installed on French-built frigates and the Charles de Gaulle aircraft carrier. The PAAMS will be provided to the Horizon frigates (France and Italy) and the Type 45 destroyers (United Kingdom).
In November 2003, the European Defense Procurement Agency, OCCAR, signed a contract for Aster 15 missiles full series production under the Franco-Italian SAAM program. The SAAM-FR (France) was qualified for operational use in May 2005 after first salvo firing from Charles de Gaulle carrier during an international exercise.
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