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June 5, 2019

German Army conducts SPIKE weapon system firing campaign

The German Army has performed a firing campaign using Rafael-developed SPIKE long-range (LR) anti-tank guided missile (ATGM) under adverse weather conditions.

The German Army has performed a firing campaign using Rafael-developed SPIKE long-range (LR) anti-tank guided missile (ATGM) under adverse weather conditions.

During the campaign, German Army gunners fired 54 live SPIKE LR ATGM missiles from the new SPIKE integrated control launch unit (ICLU) launchers. The ICLU launchers incorporate a new digital user interface.

The campaign involved complex firing scenarios, including engagements in beyond-line-of-sight (BLOS), retargeting mid-flight scenarios, and firing in total darkness in infrared mode.

Gunners also fired in day mode under challenging weather conditions with heavy rain and strong winds.

Rafael noted that the performance of both launchers and gunners was on expected lines and that all the missiles hit their targets.

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Rafael Land and Naval Division executive vice-president and head Moshe Elazar said: “SPIKE has proved to be a high-quality and reliable system chosen by 18 EU / Nato members (as well as 13 additional nations).

“EUROSPIKE and Rafael see great importance in maintaining the commonality of the European user nations SPIKE launchers and missiles.

“The nations’ interoperability is a key factor both tactically and economically. Part of our roadmap in all SPIKE weapon system upgrades includes investment of substantial R&D funds to maintain this commonality.”

“With lofted trajectories of the missiles, the warhead can strike the target with ‘pinpoint’ precision.”

In Germany, SPIKE LR missile is designated by the army as MELLS.

The SPIKE range of missiles is suitable for land, air and naval platforms, multiple ranges and a variety of targets, Rafael noted.

Supplied to 31 countries worldwide, the missiles are equipped with a sophisticated electro-optic multispectral seeker for day / night operation. The missiles also feature an advanced tandem anti-tank warhead.

With lofted trajectories of the missiles, the warhead can strike the target with ‘pinpoint’ precision.

Around 15 German soldiers and sailors underwent training on the new Spike ICLU last year, Jane’s reported.

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