US confirms the purchase of Patriot air defense missile systems by Morocco


According to information published by the United States International Trade Administration, Morocco confirms the purchase of Patriot air defense missile systems from the United States.
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U.S. army launcher unit of Patriot MIM-104 air defense missile system at Paris Le Bourget AirShow in June 2009.  (Picture source Army Recognition)


In recent years, Morocco has become one of the most important purchasers of American military equipment. According to the SIPRI (Stockholm International Peace Research Institute) Arms Trade Database, since the 2000s, Morocco has already acquired 36 second-hand M-106 mortar carrier vehicle, 346 M113 tracked APCs (Armored Personnel Carrier) and variants, 60 M109A5 155mm self-propelled howitzer, 469 M113A3 tracked APCs, 55 M-88 tracked armored recovery vehicles, and 162 M-1A1 Abrams main battle tanks.

The Patriot is one of the most popular air defense missile systems in service in the world. The MIM-104 Patriot is a surface-to-air missile (SAM) system which is manufactured by the U.S. defense company Raytheon. Raytheon Missiles & Defense has built more than 240 Patriot fire units and delivered them to customers in 17 nations.

Patriot has continually embraced new technologies to stay ahead of evolving threats. As a result, with a few small exceptions, such as heaters and cooling fans, the bulk of the system has been modernized over the past 17 years.

A patriot battery consists of radars, command-and-control technology and multiple types of interceptors, all working together to detect, identify and defeat tactical ballistic missiles, cruise missiles, drones, advanced aircraft and other threats. The PAC-3 upgrade carried with it a new missile design, nominally known as MIM-104F and called PAC-3 by the U.S. Army. The PAC-3 is able to engage ballistic missiles at a maximum range of 35 km. The missile is also able to destroy a full range of aerial threats at a maximum range of 160 km.


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