SAAM/IT Naval Self-defense System Passes Qualification Firing Test

This comes as a further success in the Franco-Italian FSAF anti-missile system program, and marks the second success of the year for the SAAM/IT system.

The qualification firing test was performed at the CEM (Centre d’Essais de la Méditerranée ) in Toulon on 17 December, 2002. It marks the end of the qualification firing run that was carried out with the SAAM naval system in its SAAM/IT configuration, as developed for the Italian Navy.

The missile was launched from the Italian experimentation ship « Carabiniere ». As planned for this firing operation, the missile intercepted a C22 target flying in patrol with another C22. The two UAVs simulated subsonic aircraft and were fitted with self-protection jammers.

The various detection, discrimination, missile launch, engagement control and final phases in the target interception process were all carried out successfully.

The ASTER 15 missile, which was self-guided in the homing phase, intercepted the target at a distance of about 10 km from its launch point.

The first SAAM/IT « production » system will be installed on aircraft carrier Nuova Unita Maggiore (NUM) « Andrea DORIA » of the Italian Navy.

The system is an anti-missile system designed to ensure the self-defense and protection of neighboring vessels. It includes a fire control function fitted with the multifunction EMPAR radar and its C_ capability, as well as vertical launch SYLVER modules, and is associated with the ASTER 15 missile.

All these steps are also important for the PAAMS program that was started in August 1999, for the Franco-Italian HORIZON frigate and for British destroyer T45. The PAAMS system, which is the principal air defense system of these naval units, uses elements in common with the SAAM/IT system and extends self-defense missions to medium range, zone and air defense missions, through the combination of ASTER 15 missiles and ASTER 30 missiles.

This is also an important step in terms of the future multi-mission frigate program that France and Italy have decided to develop in cooperation.