France and UK contract MBDA for mid-life refurbishment of SCALP EG cruise missile

World Defense & Security Industry News - MBDA
France and UK contract MBDA for mid-life refurbishment of SCALP EG cruise missile
The UK and French Ministries of Defence have jointly announced they have contracted MBDA for the mid-life refurbishment of Storm Shadow / SCALP EG cruise missiles. This will prolong the operational superiority of the weapon against the anticipated evolving threat well into next decade.
France and UK contract MBDA for mid life refurbishment of SCALP EG cruise missile 640 001Two Storm Shadow cruise missiles fitted on a  RAF 617 Squadron Tornado GR4 fighter jet
(Credit: MBDA/G H Lee)
This constitutes another major step in the Franco-British route map, continuing the cooperation in the deep strike domain which was initiated with the launch of the Storm Shadow / SCALP programme in 1996. The Storm Shadow / SCALP mid-life refurbishment programme will include a development phase and will be validated by a series of flight trials during 2019. The first refurbished missiles are expected to be returned to the French and UK armed by early 2020.

Antoine Bouvier, CEO of MBDA, said : “The Storm Shadow / SCALP programme is of special significance to MBDA because it launched the creation of Matra BAe Dynamics and its industrial organization subsequently served as a model for the whole MBDA group. This model today remains unique in the defence industry. But it has given our customers in Europe as well as in our export markets, access at an affordable cost to operational capabilities with no equivalent in the world, such as SCALP / Storm Shadow but also Meteor and Aster missiles.

Dave Armstrong, MBDA’s Executive Group Director Sales and Business Development and UK Managing Director, added: “This combined investment by the two countries ensures that Storm Shadow / SCALP will be maintained at its optimum level long into the future. It is also proof of the confidence given by France and UK in MBDA’s ability to carry out European Defence programmes.

Storm Shadow / SCALP has been put into operations with the Royal Air Force and the French Air Force in 2003 and was used in the Gulf, Iraq and Libya. The weapon is now in service with three other nations giving unrivalled deep strike capability. Storm Shadow / SCALP is operated from Tornado, Rafale, Mirage 2000 and in the future from Eurofighter Typhoon.

According to MBDA, the missile has a combat weight of 1300 kg, a length of 5.1 m and a range of more than 250 km.