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Diehl Defense will be bringing a portfolio of its products, including ammunition, missiles, an air defense system, and a new non-lethal technology to the 2012 Eurosatory exhibition in Paris this June.
One of Diehl’s major product lines is a variety of advanced missiles:
Sidewinder: Originally developed by the U.S. Navy, this air-to-air infrared-seeking weapon has been manufactured under license by Diehl since the early 1960s. While the U.S. Navy developed the AIM-9L upgrade, Diehl has carried out further enhancements to the L/1 and L/I-1 versions currently in use throughout NATO.
IRIS: This family of missiles is available in three main variants. The IRIS-T is an air-to-air guided missile with high agility for short-range engagements. It uses infrared (IR) guidance combined with a radar proximity fuse and boasts high electronic countermeasures resistance, including the ability to ignore blinding lasers commonly used as a defense against IR seekers. It is agile enough to engage other missiles. The IRIS-T SLS (for “surface-launched, short-range”) is a ground-based version of the IRIS-T designed for point defense of installations such as airfields and radar units. It mounts on a Unimog 5000 vehicle but can be adapted to other platforms used by client countries. Finally, the IRIS-T SL is another surface-launched variant adapted with an aerodynamic hood, data link, and GPS/inertial guidance for longer-range engagements, including against non-ballistic missiles.
LKF-NG: The LKF is a surface-to-air guided missile; the NG stands for New Generation. It is a lightweight, tube-launched missile designed for short-range (up to altitudes of 5,000 meters and out to ranges of 10 kilometers) point defense against air threats up to non-ballistic missiles. It uses a “common front end” guidance unit, including IR seeker, power supply, data link, flight control computer, and image processor, that can be mounted on other missiles as a cost-saving measure in the development of new systems.
IDAS: IDAS (Interactive Defense and Attack System) is designed for submarines. It is designed to be launched from a torpedo tube so that the submarine need not surface to engage air, surface, and missile threats, and is the first sub-launched missile that can operate underwater without the need for a protective capsule. It has an infrared seeker head and autopilot to operate autonomously, but the missile can be controlled by the operator via a fiber-optic data link to switch targets or abort the flight. It combines a high-precision seeker with a smaller warhead to ensure target destruction while minimizing collateral damage.
Diehl has more highly-capable systems to offer, and we’ll consider the rest of its missile lineup in our next article.