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Infantry Weapons

Rafael reveals Spike SR details

26 January 2017
A Rafael Spike SR is seen hitting a stationary M60 tank during the live-fire demonstration for potential customers held in southern Israel in December 2016. Source: Rafael Advanced Defense Systems

Israel's Rafael Advanced Defense Systems has provided IHS Jane's with additional details on its Spike Short Range (SR) infantry missile system, which it demonstrated for 15 international delegations in December 2016.

"We believe the Spike SR is the lightest, smallest, most cost-effective, and most capable fire-and-forget electro-optical shoulder-launched stand-off missile you can find today on the battlefield," a Rafael source said.

The Spike SR is the newest and smallest member of Rafael's Spike family, with a missile that is 98 cm long. According to Rafael, its control launch unit (CLU) weighs 1.2 kg with battery and the missile and launch tube together weigh 8.6 kg, meaning the total weight of the system is just under 10 kg.

No other fire-and-forget missile systems in this weight class are currently in production.

Rafael describes the Spike SR's seeker and motor as design breakthroughs. The missile does not have a separate booster to expel it from its launch tube, with this task being performed by one 'unified' motor.

The single large and three small apertures are seen on the nose of the Spike SR missile. (Rafael Advanced Defense Systems)The single large and three small apertures are seen on the nose of the Spike SR missile. (Rafael Advanced Defense Systems)

There is a large aperture on the missile's nose for the seeker's uncooled infrared sensor that can lock on to targets day or night. Unlike other members of the Spike family, the seeker is fixed rather than mounted on a gimbal. Rafael sources said this is a result of the company's investment in developing seekers with a wide field-of-view and "robust" trackers that can acquire and track fast-moving targets "even at short ranges".

There are three other smaller apertures on the missile's nose that the Rafael sources said are for high-definition day cameras.

The system's small CLU is designed to be disposable as it does not have its own sensors, just a simple OLED screen and controls that enable the operator to acquire a target using the missile's seeker.

Rafael said the Spike SR has a maximum range of 1,500 m and a minimum range of 50 m.

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