Sea Venom/ANL completes final qualification firing

by Richard Scott

MBDA has completed the second and final qualification firing of the Sea Venom/Anti-Navire Léger (ANL) air-launched anti-ship missile, marking a major step towards the weapon’s introduction to service.

Undertaken on 17 November at the Direction Générale de l’Armement (DGA) Essais de Missiles Centre at the Ile du Levant in the Mediterranean, the test scenario was designed to demonstrate the missile’s target discrimination capability in a complex and cluttered surface environment.

Point of impact: the Sea Venom/ANL missile strikes the target barge at the end of the 17 November qualification test.  (DGA)

Point of impact: the Sea Venom/ANL missile strikes the target barge at the end of the 17 November qualification test. (DGA)

Sea Venom/ANL has been developed by MBDA for the UK and French governments under a GBP500 million (USD830 million) contract awarded in March 2014. The UK, which is managing the contract as part of MBDA’s Team Complex Weapons portfolio, is procuring Sea Venom/ANL to meet its Future Anti-Surface Guided Weapon (Heavy) requirement for the Royal Navy’s (RN’s) Wildcat HMA2 helicopter. The French Navy plans to integrate the missile on the new H160M Guepard helicopter.

Sea Venom/ANL is a 110 kg-class high-subsonic missile, carrying a 30 kg semi-armour-piercing blast/fragmentation warhead, designed to disable targets from fast attack craft up to corvette size, and also offer a capability against coastal and land targets. Powered by a boost/sustain propulsion package – a fixed aft boost motor aft and a mid-body rocket sustainer – the missile is credited with a maximum range in excess of 20 km.

Guidance uses an imaging infrared (IIR) seeker, and a two-way datalink for operator-in-the-loop control. While the missile will be capable of flying a fully autonomous ‘fire and forget’ profile, operator-in-the-loop control will enable capabilities such as in-flight re-targeting, aimpoint correction/refinement, and safe abort.

 

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MBDA has completed the second and final qualification firing of the Sea Venom/Anti-Navire Léger (ANL...

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