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Sea Venom at First Qualification Trial


The Sea Venom missile has successfully completed its first qualification firing trial. The missile is jointly developed by France and the United Kingdom under the 2010 Lancaster House treaties

The trial took place at the French DGA procurement agency's test site at Ile du Levant on Feb. 20, but was only announced Friday.

The missile, measuring 240 pounds and 8.2 feet long, carries a 66-pound warhead, which it can deliver at high subsonic speed to an estimated range of 12 miles. The precise range is unknown, but MBDA has said in the past that it can be launched from beyond the reach of most modern air defence systems.

Sea Venom, known in France as ANL (for anti-navire léger or lightweight anti-ship), is an anti-ship missile designed specifically to be fired by the French Navy’s future Guépard Light Joint Helicopter (or HIL – Hélicoptère Interarmées Léger) and the U.K. Royal Navy’s AW159 Wildcat to replace the Sea Skua.

The missile is designed to attack hostile vessels, ranging in size from small fast-moving craft up to corvette sized ships “amongst civilian assets, even in congested littoral environments” MBDA says. It can also engage static land-based coastal targets.

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