Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace (KONGSBERG) has reached a production milestone for Project LAND 19 Phase 7B, with the first Mk 2 Canister Launchers for the National Advanced Surface to Air Missile System (NASAMS) successfully passing Factory Acceptance Tests (FAT). These form the first shipment of Canister Launchers to Australia.
Project LAND 19 Phase 7B is being delivered by prime contractor, Raytheon Australia, with the support of KONGSBERG and Kongsberg Defence Australia, and will deliver a new Short-Range Ground-Based Air Defense (GBAD) capability for the Australian Army.
NASAMS is a state-of-the-art GBAD weapon system produced by KONGSBERG and Raytheon Technologies that is in service with/under delivery to 12 nations. The system will enable the Australian Army to quickly detect, engage, and destroy aircraft, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), and cruise missile threats. The Mk 2 Canister Launcher represents the latest launcher build standard, and includes a new common ground launch rail to enable the employment of multiple missile types.
KONGSBERG conducted the First of Type FAT on the first and second Mk 2 Canister Launchers at Kongsberg Norway, with representatives from Raytheon Australia present.
“Successful Factory Acceptance Testing of the first Mark 2 Canister Launchers is a significant milestone for KONGSBERG,” said KONGSBERG’s Vice President Air Defense Programs, Leif Roar Olsen. “We have also been working closely with our Australian colleagues to ensure that we have a local workforce with the technical skills and expertise required to undertake final assembly, integration, and test of Army’s NASAMS Canister Launchers, as well as supporting them whilst in service. Project Engineers from Kongsberg Defence Australia recently travelled to Norway to learn about the Canister Launchers from KONGSBERG specialists in preparation for shipment to Australia in early 2022.”
Prior to the delivery to Raytheon Australia’s Center for Joint Integration in Mawson Lakes, the Canister Launchers will be painted by a local South Australian supplier, before being used as part of the Fire Distribution Center First of Type Factory Acceptance Test in Q1 and Q2 of this year. Formal delivery of the first two launchers to Raytheon Australia is scheduled for July 2022.
“Army’s NASAMS Mark 2 Canister Launchers will allow them to employ a mixture of different AMRAAM missile variants, as well as the AIM-9X Block 2 missile. This mix of missiles is highly effective against advanced aircraft, just like they are on the F-35A and Super Hornet, as well as being highly effective against air-delivered threats such as cruise missiles,” says John Fry, General Manager of Kongsberg Defence Australia. “Importantly, the Mk 2 Canister Launcher that will be provided to the Australian Army under NASAMS is the most modern launcher configuration. Successfully completing the first live-fire tests last year, this latest launcher also provides options for additional missile types.”