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News

UK MoD - launches a new approach to acquiring complex weapons


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UK MoD
: 16 July, 2008  (Company News)
A new approach to purchasing the Armed Forces' missiles took a step forward today with the launch of an Assessment Phase with Team Complex Weapons - an innovative partnering of industry and MoD - announced by Baroness Taylor at the Farnborough Air Show.
A new approach to purchasing the Armed Forces' missiles took a step forward today with the launch of an Assessment Phase with Team Complex Weapons - an innovative partnering of industry and MoD - announced by Baroness Taylor at the Farnborough Air Show.

Alongside a Teaming Agreement with all of the Team Complex Weapons members, two contracts have been placed with MBDA (UK) Ltd and Thales UK to develop six Complex Weapons projects within the Assessment Phase, at a value of around 74M for the first year:

* Indirect Fire Precision Attack Loitering Munition (MBDA-led with Team Loitering Munition).

* 100Kg weapon family to meet first the Future Air to Surface Guided Weapon (heavyweight) requirement for Royal Navy helicopters (MBDA).

* Light weapon family to meet first the Future Air to Surface Guided Weapon (lightweight) requirement (Thales UK).

* 50Kg weapon family to meet the Selected Precision Effects At Range (SPEAR) requirement for fast jets and helicopters (MBDA).

* The Common Anti-Air Modular Missile family to meet first the requirement for a Future Local Area Air Defence System (FLAADS) for the T23 Frigate and the Future Surface Combatant (MBDA).

* An upgrade programme for Storm Shadow currently used on the Tornado GR4 (MBDA).

The Assessment Phase will allow the Team CW companies to assess the innovative concepts that they have been developing, and test how they work together, and with the MoD, to develop and produce the UK's military requirements for the next generation of missiles and guided weapons for our Armed Forces.

This approach with Team CW, which also involves QinetiQ Ltd and Roxel (UK Rocket Motors) Ltd, marks a shift from individual bespoke contracts to one based on innovation, flexibility and evolution. It aims to result in fewer weapon types that are more adaptable and better able to meet the Armed Forces' requirements in an increasingly changing world.

Minister for Defence Equipment and Support, Baroness Taylor said:

'The launch of the Assessment Phase is a significant milestone in our work with Team Complex Weapons. We are embarking on an innovative approach to purchasing our next generation of missiles and guided weapons. Team CW will help to maintain the UK's key skills and technologies in missile development and protect our operational sovereignty in this sector for the future.'

Rear Admiral Amjad Hussain, Director General Weapons for the MoD, said that:

'The concept offers the potential to bring new technologies to the front line more quickly than in the past and for these to be adapted to meet new threats through technology insertion and flexible production. Through the Teaming Agreement and the enabling contracts for the six projects, Team CW has been offered the opportunity to demonstrate its capability to work in a different manner and develop a range of products which can meet the MoD's current Complex Weapons requirements and, importantly, can be adapted readily for those in the future.'

Steve Wadey, Team CW Industrial Chairman and Managing Director of MBDA UK, which leads the Team CW grouping, added:

'The prospect of being able to better understand the MoD's capability requirements through this partnering aids both industry and government immeasurably, particularly in terms of effective and efficient future investment and planning decisions. This Assessment Phase will initiate a radical transformation of the sector through the launch of these six new projects which are central to the future military capability of the UK and the long term future of the industry. Both the Assessment Phase and the Teaming Agreement between the MoD and industry will also show that the Team CW concept of more agile and effective delivery of Complex Weapons can work effectively and beneficially for both parties.'
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