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MBDA Completes Second Test Firing of MARTE ER Anti-Ship Missile

Issue 98

European missile house MBDA, announced with a press release issued on February 12, 2020 that they have conducted the second test firing of the MARTE ER anti-ship missile at the PISQ (Poligono Interforze del Salto di Quirra) test range in Sardinia in early February. According to a press release, by confirming the overall design and performance of the missile, this firing marks a critical milestone on the development path of the MARTE ER missile.

Compared to the first firing, which took place in November 2018, several additional features and functionalities were tested. These included an integrated navigation system, proximity fly-over fuse, with weapon controller and actuation system in advanced configuration. The missile also featured terminal guidance with a new seeker, engineered and developed by the MBDA Seeker Division.

The floating target was hit with an “almost zero” miss distance after a flight of about 100 km. The missile pushed its envelope to the limit with several major maneuvers including very low sea skimming at a very high speed.

MBDA said in a statement: “Hitting the target confirmed the perfect behavior of the missile and the telemetry system recorded a huge amount of data. Flight data showed very good alignment with simulation outcomes.”

“The MARTE ER program is progressing at full speed in order to meet our customers’ requirements and the full integration of the MARTE ER on the Eurofighter Typhoon platform is proceeding at pace in order to implement an anti-ship capability onto the fighter.”

Representing the 3rd generation within the MARTE Family of missile systems and is derived from the MARTE Mk2/S variant which is already in service with the Italian Navy on its NFH90 and AW101 helicopters.  The MARTE ER missile weighs 315kg and is 3.6m-long. Instead of a solid fuel rocket motor the MARTE ER missile uses a turbojet engine. To be fitted with new Store Management System (SMS) the NFH90 and AW101 helicopters will able to operate both MARTE MK2/S and MARTE ER anti-ship missiles.  With the ability to hit targets well beyond a distance of 100km, the MARTE ER missile is also going to be integrated on the Eurofighter Typhon and other fast jets.