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MBDA reports Aster 30 test success

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Four launches in May and June confirmed that MBDA has fixed the quality control issues on the Aster 30 strakes that caused two launch failures last year. MBDA photo.

PARIS (BNS): MBDA has successfully completed the test firing programme of the Aster 30 missiles, as announced by the MBDA missile systems.

Over the last month, firings have been carried out from the Italian Orizzonte frigate “Andrea Doria”, the French Horizon frigate “Forbin” and the UK trials barge “Longbow” at two different ranges in the Mediterranean, according to the report.

The trials were conducted over a range of scenarios of steadily increasing complexity, culminating in a final trial featuring a salvo firing against a sea skimming target performing a high-g terminal manoeuvre.

All the trials were fully successful with both the PAAMS ((principal anti-air missile system) ) ship equipment and Aster missiles operating as expected in each case.

"The trials have been completed in support of making sure our domestic customers are in position to deploy the full operational capability of the PAAMS(E) system with the French and Italian navies and the Sea Viper system with the Royal Navy later this year," Antoine Bouvier, CEO of MBDA was quoted as saying in the report.

The Aster 30 missiles intended for use in the Type 45 Destroyers' Sea Viper system will be ready later this year, after the successful completion of this programme.

Earlier in 2009, two test firings of PAAMS in the British (Sea Viper) configuration from the Longbow trials barge failed due to failures in the terminal phase of the engagement. It is believed that "production weaknesses" of Aster 30 missiles were to blame.

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MBDA  Aster  
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