Team CW set to proceed on UK's Seawolf/Sea Skua replacement programme
Plans to replace the UK Royal Navy's Seawolf point-defence missile system and Sea Skua helicopter-launched anti-ship missile are being taken forward by MBDA-led Team Complex Weapons (CW) as part of a package of assessment phase contracts announced on 15 July.
Seawolf's planned successor, the Future Local Area Air Defence System (Maritime) - FLAADS(M) - will leverage MBDA's Common Anti-air Modular Missile (CAMM) concept.
Meanwhile, Thales' Lightweight Multi-role Missile (LMM) and MBDA's Sea Skua IR (infrared) concept are being developed to meet the respective Light and Heavy elements of the Future Anti-Surface Guided Weapon (FASGW) requirement.
Team CW - which includes Thales UK, QinetiQ and Roxel as well as MBDA UK - was established in response to the UK government's Defence Industrial Strategy, which defined the need for the UK to retain operational sovereignty in the complex weapons sector.
Working with the Ministry of Defence, Team CW has been awarded two framework contracts worth an aggregate GBP74 million (USD148 million) to fund the startup of six new complex weapon programmes, including FLAADS(M) and FASGW, in its first year.
FLAADS(M) is intended to replace Seawolf aboard Type 23 frigates around the end of the next decade; it will also equip the projected C1/C2 variants of the Future Surface Combatant. The CAMM missile at the heart of the system will offer a range in excess of 20 km and use a combination of mid-course guidance updates and active radar homing.
The FASGW programme is required to deliver a solution to replace the Sea Skua missile from 2015. Current plans call for this capability to be delivered by two systems deployed from the Surface Combatant Maritime Rotorcraft variant of the Future Lynx helicopter: a FASGW (Light) to defeat small surface threats such as fast inshore attack craft or soft-skinned vehicles ashore; and a FASGW (Heavy) to engage larger targets up to corvette size.
LMM is a lightweight, laser-guided weapon drawing on technology previously used in the Starstreak surface-to-air missile. The 100 kg-class Sea Skua IR system would similarly build on the pedigree of the current Sea Skua but would offer extended range and introduce an imaging IR seeker and a two-way datalink.
Ok. I'm by no means an expert being TA but wouldn't it make sense for the Navy to go for Aster 15 to support the Type 45 on the FSC / C1 Type 23/23 succesor. Wouldn't this lead to savings ease of logistics etc