U.K. signs £539m missile contracts with MBDA
Britain has awarded three new missile contracts worth a combined £539m for Meteor, Common Anti-air Modular Missile (CAMM) and Sea Viper missile systems at MBDA Stevenage.
The largest contract is a £323m deal to purchase next-generation CAMM air defence missiles for the British Army and Royal Navy. CAMM has the capability to defend against anti-ship cruise missiles, aircraft and other highly sophisticated threats.
Designed and manufactured by MBDA in the UK, CAMM will be deployed using the Sea Ceptor and Land Ceptor weapon systems that will protect the Royal Navy’s Type 23 and future Type 26 warships, as well as enhancing the British Army’s Ground Based Air Defence system.
The Sea Ceptor weapon system incorporating CAMM will replace the Sea Wolf weapon system on the Type 23 Frigate and provide the anti-air defence capability on the new Type 26 frigates for the Royal Navy. Similarly, the Land Ceptor weapon system will replace the Rapier weapon system in service with the British Army and contribute technology to the replacement of ASRAAM in service with the Royal Air Force.
As part of a £41m contract, the Meteor air-to-air missiles will arm the UK’s F-35B Lightning II squadrons. The weapon will enter service on Typhoon with the RAF in 2018 and the F-35B from 2024, and will be used on a range of missions including protecting the Queen Elizabeth-class Carriers.
Meanwhile, a £175m in-service support contract for the anti-air Sea Viper weapon system will ensure that the Royal Navy’s Type 45 Destroyers can continue to provide protection from air attack to the extended fleet.