Friday, September 13, 2013

Sea Ceptor / CAMM(M) Missile Launched From MK41 VLS and Awarded Contract by UK

The United Kingdom has awarded a 250 million pound or roughly $393 million contract for the manufacture of Sea Ceptor missiles, which are the maritime component of the Common Anti-Air Modular Missile (CAMM) consisting of:
  • CAMM(A): Air component
  • CAMM(L): Land component
  • CAMM(M): Maritime component
The CAMM missiles will serve all three branches of the British armed forces.

The Sea Ceptor manufactured by MBDA will first enter service with the Type 23 frigate replacing the Sea Wolf missile and later on the Type 26 Global Combat Ship when they replace the Type 23 ships currently in service after 2020.

In the Army, it could be used as a vertically launched surface-to-air missile system, where it will replace the short-range Rapier system. In the Air Force, it could replace the current ASRAAM air-to-air missile.

The specifications of the CAMM missiles depending on version are listed as:
  • Length of 3.2 m
  • Diameter of 0.16 m
  • Weight of 99 kg
  • Range of 25 km
The CAMM missiles can be fitted with an active radar seeker or imaging infrared seeker depending on version. A two-way datalink can also be installed.

The Sea Ceptor is compatible with the Sylver Vertical Launch System (VLS) and was recently successfully tested with the MK 41 VLS from the United States using a piston-driven cold-launched method.

This marks a break through with the ability to launch European missiles from the American MK 41 launcher. Previously, users of the MK 41 VLS were unable to use MBDA missiles and restricted to using American missiles.

Four missiles can be quad-packed into a cold-launch Extensible Launching System (ExLS) vertical launcher, which can then be installed into a MK 41 cell. A smaller stand-alone ExLS CAMM launcher with three missiles is also available for smaller ships.

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