Denel Dynamics has signed an agreement with Marotta Controls for supply of the latter’s MPACT pure air compression technology to cool its new A-Darter short range, air-to-air missile (SRAAM).
Under the agreement, Marotta will supply both development and production units of MPACT pure air compression technology.
This technology is claimed to be a proven low-risk solution for the cooling of infrared (IR) missile seekers.
In particular, the technology is expected to provide A-Darter missile with a continuous flow of pure dry air to cool the imaging infrared seeker, enhancing its capability and efficiency in clear and adverse weather, while reducing the risk of seeker fouling or freezing.
Denel Dynamics A-Darter Missile programme manager Marcus de Jonge said: "The Marotta Controls MPACT is a significant addition to the A-Darter Missile System Solution.
"It provides improved operational performance, including unlimited mission time for the A-Darter missile, and greatly enhances the deployability of the missile system with significantly reduced life cycle costs."
Marotta Controls business development senior vice-president and chief sales officer Michael Leahan said: "Adding a prestigious international customer such as Denel Dynamics to our client roster validates our commitment and ability to support advanced weapon systems globally."
Ground testing of the MPACT development units has already started, with flight testing to follow in 2016.
Meanwhile, production and delivery of the MPACT systems is scheduled to commence soon after completion of the ground testing on the development units.
The A-Darter is designed by Denel in co-operation with Brazil. It is a fifth generation SRAAM capable of undertaking high off-bore sight helmet designated firings and long-range intercepts beyond IR detection range.
The missile can be designated to a target using the aircraft’s radar, a helmet sighting system, or its own effective autonomous scan feature.
It has already been integrated onto the wingtips of the South African Air Force’s (SAAF) JAS 39 Gripen fighters, while its installation onto the SAAF’s Hawk Mk.120 trainers, including MPACT in the launchers, is currently underway.
Image: Denel has selected Marotta Controls’ MPACT pure air compression technology to cool its new A-Darter short range, air-to-air missile. Photo: courtesy of Denel Dynamics.