First Saudi THAAD sites expected to be completed in 2026
17 August 2022
by Jeremy Binnie
Saudi Arabia's future Terminal High Altitude Area Defense sites. (Janes)
The first four sites for Saudi Arabia's Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) systems are expected to be completed by the end of 2026 and all seven by April 2028, according to a document released on 15 August by the US Army Corps of Engineers as part of a request for proposal (RFP).
The RFP was released to find a contractor to monitor construction projects in Saudi Arabia that were listed in the document. It gave the estimated completion date for a storage facility for THAAD ballistic missile interceptors at Al-Kharj in central Saudi Arabia as January 2025 and the first battery site at Ras al-Ghar on the kingdom's Gulf coast as February 2026. This will be followed by the battery sites at Yanbu and Taif in the west and King Khalid Military City (KKMC) in the north later that year.
Partner 2023: Serbia rolls out new self-propelled anti-aircraft gun and missile system
26 September 2023
by Christopher Petrov
Reminiscent of an earlier trend in SPAAG design, the Harpas system utilises a M-84 main battle tank hull combined with a turret equipped with anti-aircraft weaponry. (Janes/Christopher Petrov)
Serbia's Military Technical Institute (MTI) unveiled its Harpas self-propelled anti-aircraft gun (SPAAG) and missile system at the Partner 2023 defence exhibition in Belgrade.
Harpas utilises a modern radar connected to a pair of 40 mm L/70 Bofors anti-aircraft cannons, which feature on other recent anti-aircraft systems including the in-service Pasars-16.
MTI is also developing its own programmable airburst munitions, which will improve the cannons' ability to shoot down small unmanned aerial vehicles. As a secondary role, the cannons can be used against ground targets.
Harpas is also equipped with two missile pods – one mounted on each side of the turret – housing locally developed RLN-TK and RLN-RF surface-to-air missiles (SAMs), the former of which is guided by a thermal seeker and the latter by radio frequency. For target detection, the system is equipped with what appears to be a Danish Weibel Xenta radar.
Iran shows Russian defence minister missiles it denies supplying to Yemen
21 September 2023
by Jeremy Binnie
Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu is shown a ‘351 land-attack cruise missile' at Iran's IRGC Aerospace Force museum in Tehran. (Russian Ministry of Defence)
The Russian Ministry of Defence (MoD) confirmed that missiles previously only displayed by Yemen's Houthi rebels are Iranian, when it released photographs of Minister of Defence Sergei Shoigu inspecting them during a visit to Tehran on 20 September. The missiles were also seen in footage broadcast by the Sputnik news agency.
The weapons included the cruise missile that Ansar Allah calls the Quds, which Shoigu was shown at the Islamic Revolution Guard Corps (IRGC) Aerospace Force's museum in Tehran. The missile has not previously been seen in Iran despite extensive local media coverage of the museum.
Referred to as the ‘351 land-attack cruise missile' by the US military, the Quds has been used to attack targets in Saudi Arabia several times as well as Abu Dhabi on 17 January 2022.
Shoigu was also shown a type of loitering surface-to-air missile (SAM) the US military calls the ‘358 SAM' and the Houthis have displayed as the Saqr-1.
The Lithuanian Air Force conducted its first live firing of NASAMS during Exercise ‘Silver Arrow 2023' held in Norway. (Norwegian Armed Forces)
The Lithuanian Air Force (LAF) conducted its first live firing of the National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile System (NASAMS) III medium-range air-defence system during Exercise ‘Silver Arrow 2023', the Norwegian Armed Forces announced on their website on 15 September. The firing took place at the Nordmela missile firing range on Andøya in Nordland, Norway, and was supported by Ørland airbase's air-defence battalion, which verified the training the LAF conducted in Lithuania.
During the exercise, the Norwegian air-defence battalion and the LAF practised deploying and integrating the two countries' NASAMS III and operating together.
The Norwegian Armed Forces reported that the first Lithuanian live firing of NASAMS hit the target drone.
The LAF's Air Defence Battalion received NASAMS III in 2020. The systems were placed on standby during the NATO leaders' meeting in the Lithuanian capital, Vilnius, on 11–12 July, along with German Patriot and Spanish NASAMS air-defence systems.
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