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Philippine Navy tested Spike NLOS anti-ship missile fitted with Acero class fast assault interdiction craft.

| Naval News Navy 2024

On April 9, 2024, the Philippine Navy successfully conducted tests of the new Spike NLOS (non-line of sight) missile system aboard one of its FAIC (fast attack interdiction craft) platforms. The test, which took place in Mariveles, Bataan, was successful, with the system precisely hitting a target over 20 kilometers away.
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Russian Vyborg Shipyard laid the Purga ice class coastguard ship of project 23550 925 001 Rafael Spike NLOS short-range anti-ship missile (Picture source: Rafael)

According to Commander John Percie Alcos, spokesperson for the Navy, this activity is part of the acceptance terms and training deliverables included in the FAIC acquisition project. He highlighted the importance of this new capability, stating that the Spike NLOS system represents a leap forward in the technology of precisely guided munitions. The Philippine Navy received the two FAICs, also known as the Acero-class gunboats, from Israel on November 18, 2023.

Developed by Israeli company Rafael Advanced Defense Systems, the Spike NLOS missile system is equipped with advanced electro-optical and infrared sensors, offering day and night operational capabilities. Its impressive range of up to 30 kilometers allows operators to engage targets with absolute precision from long distances.

The Naval Spike ER is an advanced naval missile system comprised of a lightweight, compact, and stabilized turret with 4 missiles on the mount – together with a fire control system for ranges up to 10 km with either Penetration-Blast-Fragmentation (PBF) or fragmentation warheads that can be operated in a “Fire & Forget” or “Fire & Update” mode with pinpoint kill accuracy. SPIKE ER is installed on a mount compatible with a variety of platforms, ranging from Rigid Hull Inflated Boats (RHIBs) to larger boats and ships.

This test coincides with the commemoration of Veterans Week and National Valor Day. Commander Alcos emphasized that this capability demonstration reflects the Philippine Navy's determination to protect national sovereignty.

This acquisition is part of the Philippine armed forces' modernization program, which includes nine FAIC platforms and the transfer of technology to enhance the country’s naval construction capacity.

The Acero-class patrol gunboat has a full load displacement of 95 tons, measures 32.65 meters (107.1 feet) in length and 6.2 meters (20 feet) in maximum beam, with a draft of 1.25 meters (4.1 feet). Propelled by two MTU 16V 4000 M70 Diesel Engines and two MJP-J650 waterjets, the vessel can achieve speeds exceeding 40 knots (74 km/h) at maximum capacity, with a range of 1,000 nautical miles (1,900 km) at 15 knots (28 km/h). It operates with a crew of 12 personnel.

Equipped with a Furuno Navnet 3D X-band navigation/surface search radar and a Rafael Toplite electro-optical tracking system (EOTS), the patrol gunboat ensures effective navigation and surveillance capabilities.

In terms of armament, the vessel features a Rafael Typhoon MLS-NLOS missile launcher capable of carrying 8 Spike-NLOS surface-to-surface missiles (limited to 4 ships only). Additionally, it is armed with one Mk.44 Bushmaster II autocannon mounted on a Rafael Typhoon Mk 30-C remote-controlled weapon station, two M2HB Browning 12.7 mm/50-cal. heavy machine guns mounted on Rafael Mini Typhoon remote-controlled weapon stations, and two M60 7.62 mm/30-cal. GP machine guns.

Philippine Navy tested Spike NLOS short range anti ship missile with Acero class patrol gunboats

Philippines Acero class fast assault interdiction craft (Picture source:Philippines Navy)

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