Spyder on guard in Singapore

 - February 15, 2012, 6:15 PM

On show in the static area is Singapore’s latest air defense system, the Spyder-SR provided by Rafael. Spyder (the name derives from the Python and Derby missiles that form its armament) is a family of air defense systems based on common weapons and common software. It was devised for export, and it has been successful in several countries, including India.

Each Spyder system comprises a weapons launcher for the Derby active radar and Python 5 imaging infrared missiles, a common command and control unit, and a search/track radar unit. In the rapid-reaction Spyder-SR version the missiles are essentially unchanged from their air-to-air versions, firing from a swiveling launcher system that can be raised to various firing elevations. The radar for the SR version is the IAI Elta ELM-2106 ATAR, and the system can also mount a Toplite electro-optical/infrared sensor turret. This last element of the new system is due for delivery to Singapore next month.

Spyder-SR is designed to protect airspace out to a range of around 20 kilometers. For wider engagement envelopes, Rafael offers two family members to cover the 35-kilometer and 50-kilometer range requirements. The 35-km Spyder-MR system retains ELM-2106 radar but changes to a vertical launcher firing rocket-boosted versions of the Python 5 and Derby. The 50-km Spyder-MR has the boosted missiles, but moves to the ELM-2084 AD radar to provide additional range coverage.