The first Cannister Launchers for Australia’s new National Advanced Surface to Air Missile System (NASAMS) have successfully passed factory acceptance tests (FAT).
Norwegian defence company KONGSBERG said this was a critical production milestone for Project LAND 19 Phase 7B, which will deliver a new Short Range Ground-Based Air Defence capability for the Australian Army.
Kongsberg Defence and Aerospace conducted the First of Type factory acceptance tests of the first Mk 2 Canister Launcher at its Norway facility, before completing tests on the second launcher. Representatives from Raytheon Australia, the prime contractor for NASAMS, were in Norway to witness the occasion.
Kongsberg Defence and Aerospace Vice President of Air Defence Programs, Leif Roar Olsen, said this highlighted the close partnership between the KONGSBERG teams and the importance of technology transfer in delivering this transformational capability for the Australian Army. He said successful Factory Acceptance Testing of the first Mark 2 Canister Launchers was a significant milestone.
“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,” he said.
Project Engineers from Kongsberg Defence Australia recently travelled to Norway to learn about the Canister Launchers in preparation for shipment to Australia in early 2022.
NASAMS is an advanced air defence system produced by KONGSBERG and Raytheon Technologies which is in service with or in the process of delivery to 12 nations.
And further work is ahead. Before delivery to Raytheon Australia’s Centre for Joint Integration in Mawson Lakes, South Australia, the Canister Launchers will be painted by a local supplier. Then they will be used in Fire Distribution Centre First of Type Factory Acceptance Test in the first and second quarter of this year. Delivery of the first two launchers to Raytheon Australia is scheduled for July 2022.
Kongsberg Defence Australia general manager John Fry said the Mark 2 Canister Launchers would allow use of different variants of the Raytheon AMRAAM missile 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,” he said.