Army commits to new Hawkei-mounted air-defence system

Army’s 16th Air Land Regiment is set to replace its current and ageing man-portable RBS-70 air-defence system with a new Hawkei-based National Advanced Surface to Air Missile System (NASAMS).

CAPTION: An artist’s impression of a 16th Air Land Regiment NASAMS emplacement. Raytheon concept image.

Formally announced today, the $2.5 billion project to buy and sustain the short-range air defence capability will see the Raytheon/Kongsberg NASAMS suite paired with radars built by Canberra-based CEA Technologies, mounted on Bendigo-built Hawkei utes.

Minister for Defence Christopher Pyne said the this new air defence capability combined world-leading Australian radar technology with a highly effective air defence system that will contribute to the protection of our service men and women from modern airborne threats.

“The capability will be based on the Raytheon/Kongsberg National Advanced Surface to Air Missile System, which is used by several countries including the United States [and Indonesia],” Minister Pyne said.

“Australia’s version of NASAMS will use advanced radars designed and manufactured by Canberra-based company, CEA Technologies.

“CEA radars have been so successful on our ships and will now be integrated into an Australian-designed and -built vehicle, the Thales Hawkei.

“I’m delighted to announce that one of Australia’s most innovative technologies will be used to further enhance the effectiveness of NASAMS and contribute to one of the world’s best short-range ground-based air-defence systems.”

Minister for Defence Industry Linda Reynolds said Australian industry would play a vital role in the $2.5 billion project to buy and sustain the short-range air-defence capability, which will replace the Army’s current ageing RBS-70 man-portable air defence system.

“Australian industry will secure more than $1 billion of the total investment in acquiring and maintaining the short range air defence capability,” Minister Reynolds said.

“Today’s announcement will create opportunities for defence exports generating employment for at least 100 Australian workers over the projected life of the capability.”

Much of the work on this project will be done at Raytheon’s new Australia Centre for Joint Integration, planned to be built in the defence-industry precinct at Mawson Lakes, South Australia, with a $50 million investment from Raytheon.

This procurement falls under Project LAND 19 Phase 7B.

 

Watch an overseas NASAMS in action here…

 

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Brian Hartigan

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