Germany approves the sale of 16 IRIS-T SL air defense missile systems to Egypt


According to a news published by the Deutsche Welle website on December 16, 2021, Former Chancellor Angela Merkel's German government has approved the sale of 16 IRIS-T SL medium-range air defense missile systems to Egypt. The IRIS-T SL is manufactured by the German company Diehl Defense.
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DIEHL launcher vehicle with 2x4 IRIS-T SL missile containers mounted on MAN truck chassis at ILA Berlin Air Show 2016. (Picture source Wikimedia)


According to the SIPRI (Stockholm International Peace Research Institute) arms trade database, in 2019, Egypt would have ordered seven IRIS-T SL/SLM surface-to-air defense missile system from Germany.

The IRIS-T SL is a mobile surface-to-air defense missile system using the IRIS-T SL guided missile. The further development of the IRIS-T air-to-air guided missile was specifically designed for ground-based air defense. Selective adaptations in aerodynamics and rocket motor allow an extraordinary range of 40 km and an altitude coverage of 20 km.

The IRIS-T missile is equipped with an imaging infra-red (IIR) seeker for high accuracy and all-aspect capability in severe electronic counter measures (ECM) environments. The solid-fueled motor with thrust vector control ensures the engagement of highly maneuverable targets.

The IRIS-T SLM air defense missile system is able of destroy a wide range of aerial threats (except ballistic missiles), including rockets, cruise missile, drones, helicopters and fighters, under jamming conditions.

To combine the advantages of a long range radar based midcourse guidance and the high resolution imaging infrared seeker for precise terminal homing, IRIS-T SLM is equipped with a data link for on-flight target data updates and a GPS-aided inertial navigation system.

A standard launcher vehicle of IRIS-T SL two pods of four missile launcher containers that can be reload by a reloader vehicle equipped with a crane placed on an elevation platform. The IRIS-T SL launcher can be adapted to different types of wheeled or tacked vehicles being fully transportable by military transport aircraft.

A battery of IRIS-T SLM includes launcher units including missiles as well as weapon master computer, generator or antenna; an Active Electronically Scanned Array 3D multifunctional radar. It enables 360 degree coverage and is used for both airspace monitoring and target data provision. If necessary, it can be supplemented with electro-optical sensors.

The Tactical Operations Center (TOC) is manned by two operators. The connection to the other system elements takes place via radio link or fiber optic cable. In addition, the TOC has the data interfaces and communication options necessary for connection to higher-level management or information structures. This external connection can be real-time or non-real-time.


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