By Sangeeta Saxena

New Delhi/ Bolton/Orleans. 03 December 2017. Riding high on the success of the test firing of Sea Ceptor by the Royal Navy, MBDA is confident that its  range of maritime systems that focus on the requirements of the navies of the world, will help enhance Indian Navy’s  blue water capability.

ADU on an invitation to visit the MBDA facilities recently,  in a chat with  Loïc Piedevache , India Head, MBDA, was briefed  on all that it has on the platter for Indian Navy in addition to the other forces.

 “Our strategy revolves around offering the Indian Navy, a choice of solutions based on the most advanced technology. Exocet has been successfully fired from India made Scorpene . The most important action is that the submarine does not have to rise to periscope depth before launching its attack thus allowing for maximum discretion and survivability,” he informed.

Sea Ceptor- a ship-based, all-weather, air defence weapon system. Sea Wolf-a naval guided missile system, Sea Venom-ANL- future anti-surface guided weapon-anti-navire leger, Sea Ranger – PB- a modular combat system for patrol boats, Simbad-RC remote control naval lightweight twin launcher for ship self-defence, Milas which counters submarine attacks from safe stand off ranges, VL MICA-M, fired from a ship-fitted vertical launch system and MdCN Missile de Croisière Naval (naval cruise missile) with specific applications for the Modular Vertical Launch System and Torpedo Tube launch, are some MBDA Naval systems which the company feels would be an asset to any Navy.

Another important offering to navies  is the MARTE ER which represents the 3rd generation within the MARTE family of missile systems and is derived from MARTE MK2/S which is already in service with the Italian Navy on its NFH90 and AW101 helicopters. The main difference between the two lies in the introduction of a turbo engine in place of the rocket motor. MARTE ER’s design takes into account that MARTE MK2/S is already qualified and installed on these two platforms. It has the same mechanical, functional & electrical helicopter interfaces. No platform hardware changes required to manage the MARTE ER missile, only software changes to the Store Management System (SMS) are required to manage longer range performance. The helicopter, with the new version of SMS software, is able to operate both MARTE MK2/S and MARTE ER missiles

MDCN – NCM  is another  conventionally armed naval cruise missile which is both ship and submarine launched. The ability to strike strategic and military targets with exceptional precision from extended stand-off ranges has become a key operational requirement. Bringing together these European skills, MBDA is now developing MdCN- NCM (Naval Cruise Missile) to meet the requirement issued by the French Ministry of Defence for a long-range cruise missile capable of being launched from surface vessels and submarines.

MdCN- NCM provides a unique operational capability with long range metric precision strike against politically / military sensitive targets. MdCN- NCM is vertically launched from France’s FREMM frigates using the compact A70 SYLVER vertical launcher which is also capable of housing other MBDA missiles such as the ASTER family of air defence missiles. On France’s future Barracuda nuclear-powered attack submarines, MdCN- NCM will be launched through the torpedo tubes.

Loic informed that a number of environmental and handling issues have on the service life of a missile. Knowing what this impact is, helps to determine the maintenance schedule and to ensure that missile stocks are maintained at the optimum level of readiness for deployment. MBDA will always help Indian Navy in Stock Pile Management.