At DSEI 2015 in London on 16th September, MBDA executives confirmed they are ready to offer weapon systems appropriate to the requirements of the Canadian Surface Combatant (CSC), Canada’s forthcoming major naval vessel procurement programme.
Pascal Bec, Regional Executive Sales and Business Development, explained that the main air defence system requirement would potentially be satisfied by “a missile based on the existing Aster system,” which the company characterises as “the cornerstone of Europe’s naval and land-based air defence systems.”
Featuring a direct thrust vector control called ‘PIF-PAF,’ the Aster system offers operators very high hit-to-kill capabilities and was originally designed to combat incoming missiles, which requires a high level of agility.
MBDA also plans to offer the Common Anti-Air Modular Missile (CAMM) for the CSC requirement, complementing the Aster proposal with what Bec describes as “a CAMM family solutions.” The exact nature of that solution is not yet known, though the extended range CAMM-ER variant was on prominent display on the company’s booth at DSEI. The CAMM family’s advanced active RF seeker provides operators with true all-weather capability.
In addition, Bec pointed out that the recent decision by the US Navy to effectively abandon further development and support for the Harpoon missile gives MBDA an opportunity to offer Exocet, for which development continues, to interested nations as an alternative, including Canada. “Exocet is continually improving and we will therefore be offering it as a component of any weapon system requiring the flexibility and agility the missile represents,” said Bec, adding that Canada, for example, is also seeking to equip sections of its helicopter fleet with an advanced strike capability.
“We understand Canada will organise a competitive procurement for the CSC air defence missile and we are very confident our offer will give the Canadian Navy the opportunity to balance economy with capability. We welcome the opportunity to compete with our functionally attractive and commercially viable systems: we recognise this is the only way to protect the interests of Canada,” said Bec.