The Brimstone anti-armor weapon was successfully tested for a second time at Yuma Proving Grounds, Ariz., last month. This followed an initial flight test of the Brimstone missile in August.
The hardware involved in the mission included the Alenia Marconi Systems Brimstone missile with its advanced millimeter wave seeker, and the Boeing designed and manufactured Brimstone launcher.
The primary objectives of this launch were to test missile flight control over speed and altitude conditions, demonstrate inertial navigation system ability, verify missile body-to-seeker communication, prove seeker target acquisition and evaluate telemetry system performance. All objectives were successfully achieved, according to program officials.
Alenia Marconi Systems Brimstone Project Director Alun Fishburne remarked, "This is the first time we have tested the integrated missile and seeker under actual free-flight conditions. We are extremely pleased with the results, which correlate well with the previous series of captive fast jet trials that took place earlier this year."
"Two major program milestones were accomplished with the successful first launch in August and this flight test," said Paul Palagyi, Brimstone program manager for Boeing. "Over the next few months, we will conduct three ground launches at Yuma Proving Grounds and a Tornado aircraft launch of a non-guided Brimstone missile in the United Kingdom." The Brimstone program has met all milestones on or ahead of schedule.
Boeing is under contract to prime contractor Alenia Marconi Systems, an equal shares joint venture company between Finmeccanica of Italy and GEC of the United Kingdom, to provide the Brimstone missile airframe and major system components, including the smart launcher. It is being developed to satisfy the United Kingdom Royal Air Force's Staff Requirement (Air) 1238 for a highly effective, autonomous weapon for launch from fixed wing aircraft. The missile will be capable of defeating all modern and future armored threats in a wide range of scenarios, and has stand-off capability to minimize the threat to the delivery aircraft.
The Brimstone system consists of three missiles mounted on a smart three-rail launcher. Brimstone will be cleared to operate from Harrier, Tornado and Eurofighter 2000 aircraft.