Tag Archives: MBDA

Video shows Brimstone anti-armour missile fired by RAF Tornado destroy ISIS armed pick-up in Iraq

Here’s the effect of the first British air strike on ISIS in Iraq.

On Sept. 30, RAF Tornado GR4 aircraft from RAF Akrotiri airbase, Cyprus, attacked ISIS positions in northwestern Iraq.

The two planes, were flying an armed reconnaissance mission when they were tasked to support Kurdish troops who were under attack from ISIS terrorists.

During the second strike, the British “Tonkas” destroyed a “technical” (armed pick-up truck) with a Brimstone missile.

The Brimstone, is a fire-and-forget anti-armour missile, first fielded during 2008 after an urgent operational requirement, used on the RAF’s Harriers during operations over Afghanistan, that became the RAF weapons of choice during  in the Air War over Libya.

The Tornado GR4, that didnt’ carry the Brimstone on their very first armed patrol over Iraq, carry a mixed load out with a single rack of three Brimstones and two Paveway IV 226kg bombs along with the Rafael Litening III targeting pod.

Optimized for use against fast moving platforms, these small guided missiles feature a warhead of 9 kg and have a range of 7.5 miles. They use a millimeter wave (mmW) radar seeker with a semi-active laser (SAL) that enables final guidance to the target by either the launching platform or another plane, and are perfect to destroy a vehicle with very low collateral damage risk, and an accuracy of about 1 – 2 meters.

Brimstone is an extensive redevelopment of the AGM-114 Hellfire and can be used on fast jets, helicopters and UAVs.

 

This is the effect of a Brimstone missile launched by a Reaper drone on a SUV

A series of images show the effects of Dual Mode Brimstone missiles fired by an MQ-9 Reaper drone. By the way, the trucks in the opening image are different ones.

With nine direct hits on high speed, maneuvering vehicles, MBDA has successfully demonstrated its Dual Mode Brimstone missile on an MQ-9 Reaper.

The tests were conducted in December 2013 and January 2014 at the U.S. Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake, on behalf of UK Ministry of Defence by the Royal Air Force’s (RAF) Air Warfare Centre Unmanned Air Systems Test and Evaluation Squadron, Defence Equipment & Support Weapons Operating Centre, United States Air Force’s BIG SAFARI Organisation, General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Incorporated and MBDA.

According to an MBDA release, “the firings were taken from realistic ‘middle of the envelope’ profiles; typically 20,000ft release altitude and 7km – 12km plan range, with the platform being remotely piloted in operationally representative beyond line of sight (SATCOM) conditions, with tracking and designation of targets being conducted in a mixture of manual-track and auto-track modes.”

Brimstone is a fire and forget anti-armour missile that had a starring role in the Air War over Libya, when RAF fired a good number of these advanced weapons with impressive results.

These small guided missiles have a range of 7.5 miles and use a millimeter wave (mmW) radar seeker with a semi-active laser (SAL) that enables final guidance to the target by either the launching platform or another plane, and are perfect for small targets, individuals, buildings and fast-moving vehicles.

With a warhead of 9 kg, capable of destroying a vehicle with very low collateral damage risk, and an accuracy of about 1 – 2 meters, the dual-mode (radar – laser) Brimstone missile proved to be the weapons of choice of the RAF Tornados when engaging ground vehicles, attracting the interest of other coalition partners.

As Brimstone is an extensive redevelopment of the AGM-114 Hellfire it can be used on fast jets, helicopters and UAV’s: the Dual Mode Brimstone can provide Reaper crews with a weapon that reduces collateral damage risk while preserving first pass, single shot lethality against high speed manoeuvring targets on land and at sea.

MBDA-Brimstone-Reaper

Image credit: MBDA

 

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Eurofighter Typhoon test fires Beyond Visual Range Meteor missile

On Dec. 4, during flight trials conducted with support from QineticQ and MBDA at the Aberporth firing range, UK, a Typhoon fired a Meteor BVR (Beyond Visual Range) air to air missile.

The live firing test was part of the Future Enhancements Flight Test Programme which foresees the full integration of the missile with the Typhoon.

The Meteor long-range missile was eject launched from a semi-conformal rear fuselage missile station aircraft drag and radar signature reduction.

The missile motor was fired, in order to gather data that will allow the missile launch envelope to be expanded.

Image credit: BAe Systems

After taking part in the Meteor trials, Typhoon Test Pilot Steve Long said: “By completing these initial Meteor flight trials, Typhoon has taken a significant leap forward in operational capability.  As a fighter pilot, you ultimately want the best possible combination of aircraft and advanced weapons to ensure mission success and to get you home safely. The range and performance of the Meteor weapon goes a long way to achieving this – with confidence.  A potent long range missile, coupled with a highly agile aircraft gives us a very potent and very powerful mix.”

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RAF's weapon of choice in Libya to be upgraded as export opportunities emerge

MBDA has announced it is to work on a successor to Brimstone the fire and forget anti-armour missile that had a starring role in the Air War over Libya. During Operation Unified Protector the RAF fired a good number of these advanced weapons and the results were startling.

Optimized for release from fast moving platforms, these small guided missiles have a range of 7.5 miles. They use a millimeter wave (mmW) radar seeker with a semi-active laser (SAL) that enables final guidance to the target by either the launching platform or another plane, and are perfect for small targets, individuals, buildings and fast-moving vehicles.

With a warhead of 9 kg, capable of destroying a vehicle with very low collateral damage risk, and an accuracy of about 1 – 2 meters, the dual-mode (radar – laser) Brimstone missile proved to be the weapons of choice of the RAF Tornados when engaging ground vehicles, attracting the interest of other coalition partners.

First fielded during 2008 after an urgent operational requirement, the weapon was used first on the RAF’s Harriers during operations over Afghanistan. It has now been integrated onto the Tornado GR4 typically in a mixed load out with a single rack of three brimstone and two Paveway IV 226kg bombs and sometimes with the Rafael Litening III reconnaissance pod.

The Brimstone is also to be integrated onto the RAF’s Typhoon which (in theory) could carry 18 of the 50kg (110-lb) weapons: the use of the advanced anti-armor, air-to-surface missile offering all-weather “fire and forget” capability on the Typhoon would enhance the Typhoon’s ground attack capability considerably.

MBDA has said it has delivered some 500 weapons to the RAF which has fired some 200 of the missiles during both operations in Afghanistan and Libya.

The enhancements brought in by Brimstone2 are said to be an improved seeker and updated explosives. MBDA also said it expects to have “improvements in range and engagement footprint” obviously lessons learned over Libya are now filtering down to the final product with these upgrades. Having changed a few manufacturing techniques building the weapon has also improved the ability to fix or repair damaged weapons.

As Brimstone is an extensive redevelopment of the AGM-114 Hellfire it can be used on fast jets, helicopters and UAV’s and MBDA says that export customers can buy either weapon.

It does look like the US Military is first in line with the French close behind.

Written with The Aviationist’s Editor David Cenciotti

Image credit: RAF/Crown Copyright