The Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF)’s Surface-to-Air Python-5 and Derby (SPYDER) ground-based air defence system has attained full operational capability status.

The achievement is a significant development to the overall enhancement of the Singapore Armed Forces’ (SAF) next-generation capabilities.

During a ceremony held at the Chong Pang Camp military base, Singapore Senior Minister of State for Defence Dr Mohamad Maliki Bin Osman said: “The SPYDER is an improvement from the Rapier system as it is able to intercept not just aircraft but also munitions, therefore widening the spectrum of threats that our air defences can tackle.

“The all-weather air defence system features anti-aircraft and anti-munition capabilities to handle a wide range of aerial threats.”

“An all-weather system equipped with advanced infra-red and radar-guided missiles, the SPYDER can intercept aerial threats at more than twice the range and three times the altitude of the Rapier, while engaging multiple targets at the same time.”

SPYDER is part of the enhanced Island Air Defence System, which is a networked system that combines sensors, weapon systems, command and control elements, and decision-making tools to improve the country’s air defence.

The all-weather air defence system features anti-aircraft and anti-munition capabilities to handle a wide range of aerial threats. It requires only a four-man crew to deploy the system.

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Personnel using the SPYDER system have undergone extensive training in operating and maintaining the system, while also validating its capabilities in local and overseas exercises.

The air defence system allows the Singapore Air Force to continue to effectively protect the country’s airspace.