The Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF) has revealed the first images of its newly delivered MBDA Aster 30 SAMP/T (Sol-Air Moyenne Portée Terrestre, or surface-to-air medium range/land) self-propelled surface-to-air missile (SAM) system.
Screengrabs from a video commemorating its 50th Anniversary, hosted on the service’s official Facebook page and accessed by Jane’s on 29 March, showed the Aster 30 SAMP/T mounted on a Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles 8x8 TG-series truck at an undisclosed facility in Singapore.
The system will replace the RSAF’s heavily modified but ageing Raytheon MIM-23B Improved Homing All the Way Killer (I-HAWK) missile systems operated by 163 Squadron, which entered service in the early 1980s.
“The RSAF has taken delivery of the Aster 30 missile system,” a Ministry of Defence (MINDEF) spokesperson told Jane’s .
“The system is currently undergoing local testing and integration into our enhanced Island Air Defence (IAD) system,” the spokesperson added. “When operationalised, the Aster 30 will enhance the RSAF’s overall air defence capabilities to protect Singapore against a wide spectrum of air threats.”
Singapore’s interest in the Aster 30 missile system was revealed in September 2013, when Defence Minister Dr Ng Eng Hen announced that it was selected as a medium-range air defence system to supplement the shorter-range Rafael Advanced Defense Systems Surface-to-Air PYthon and DERby (SPYDER) system, which was delivered in 2012.
MINDEF did not provide further details of its acquisition, but the Aster 30 SAMP/T system is understood to comprise a ground launcher system which includes four truck-mounted vertical launchers, with an option for up to six vertical launchers. Each mobile launcher carries a launcher module carrying eight Aster 30 missiles, and can fire all eight missiles in less than 10 seconds. The launcher can be quickly rearmed once its missiles have been expended.
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