Me­teor air-to-air mis­sile test­ing on Rafale

SP's MAI - - AEROSPACE DEVELOPMENTS -

On April 6, teams from the French De­fense Pro­cure­ment Agency (DGA), Das­sault Avi­a­tion, MBDA and Thales suc­cess­fully com­pleted the fi­nal guided fir­ing (in­te­gra­tion flight test) of the Me­teor long-range air-to-air mis­sile against an air tar­get from a Rafale om­ni­role com­bat air­craft.

This fir­ing, from a Rafale pre­pared at the DGA Flight Test­ing (Cazaux Test Cen­ter), pro­ceeded within a se­cured zone of DGA Mis­siles Test­ing (Bis­car­rosse Test Cen­ter). The Me­teor suc­cess­fully en­gaged and de­stroyed at a very long-range a high-speed air tar­get (Mirach) sim­u­lat­ing an evad­ing fighter air­craft.

This fifth, global, fir­ing com­pleted the full in­te­gra­tion flight test­ing cam­paign of the Me­teor air-to-air mis­sile onto the Rafale om­ni­role com­bat air­craft.

Since the first test on April 28, 2015, this cam­paign, con­ducted smoothly and un­event­fully, demon­strated and con­firmed su­pe­rior per­for­mances than those ex­pected at the in­cep­tion.

Thanks to the ex­tended range ca­pa­bil­ity of its RBE2 AESA (Ac­tive Elec­tron­i­cally-Scanned Ar­ray) radar, the Rafale equipped with the Me­teor will be able, from 2018, to in­ter­cept tar­gets at very long range, when the MICA (RF/IR) mis­sile will com­ple­ment this truly im­pres­sive air-to-air ca­pa­bil­ity, both for com­bat in­ter­cep­tion and self-de­fense.

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