MBDA Storm Shadow Missile (RAF)

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SKB
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MBDA Storm Shadow Missile (RAF)

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Introduction
Storm Shadow is a British, French and Italian air-launched cruise missile, manufactured by MBDA. Storm Shadow is the British name for the weapon; in French service it is called SCALP EG (Système de Croisière Autonome à Longue Portée – Emploi Général, meaning General Purpose Long Range Stand-off Cruise Missile). The missile is based on the earlier MBDA Apache anti-runway missile, and differs in that it carries a warhead, rather than sub-munitions.

Characteristics
The missile has a range of approximately 250 kilometres (155 mi), is powered by a turbojet at Mach 0.8 and can be carried by the RAF Tornado GR4, Saab Gripen, Italian Tornado IDS, Dassault Mirage 2000 and Dassault Rafale aircraft. Storm Shadow will be integrated with the Eurofighter Typhoon as part of the Phase 2 Enhancement (P2E) in 2015, and it will be fitted to the F-35B Lightning II once that aircraft comes into service. The BROACH warhead features an initial penetrating charge to clear soil or enter a bunker, then a variable delay fuse to control detonation of the main warhead. The missile weighs about 1,300 kilograms (2,866 lb), has a maximum body diameter of 48 centimetres (1.6 ft) and a wingspan of 3 metres (9.8 ft). Intended targets are command, control and communications; airfields; ports and power stations; AMS/ammunition storage; ships/submarines in port; bridges and other high-value strategic targets.

It is a fire and forget missile, programmed before launch. Once launched, the missile cannot be controlled, its target information changed or be self-destructed. Mission planners programme the missile with the target air defences and target. The missile follows a path semi-autonomously, on a low flight path guided by GPS and terrain matching to the area of the target. Close to the target, the missile climbs and then bunts into a dive. Climbing to altitude is intended to achieve the best probability of target identification and penetration. During the bunt, the nose cone is jettisoned to allow a high resolution thermographic camera (Infra-red homing) to observe the target area. The missile then tries to locate its target based upon its targeting information (DSMAC). If it can not, and there is a high risk of collateral damage, it will fly to a crash point instead of risking inaccuracy.

Recent enhancements of the Storm Shadow / SCALP EG include the capability to relay target information just before impact, utilization of one-way (link-back) datalink, to relay battle damage assessment information back to the host aircraft. This upgrade is already under development under a French DGA contract. Another feature planned for insertion into the weapon is in-flight re-targeting capability, utilizing a two-way datalink.

History
British Aerospace and Matra were competing with McDonnell Douglas, Texas Instruments/Short Brothers, Hughes/Smiths Industries, Daimler-Benz Aerospace/Bofors, GEC-Marconi and Rafael. The BAe/Matra Storm Shadow was selected on 25 June 1996. A development and production contract was signed on 11 February 1997, by which time Matra and BAe had completed the merger of their missile businesses to form Matra BAe Dynamics. France ordered 500 SCALP missiles in January 1998.

The first successful fully guided firing of the Storm Shadow/SCALP EG took place at the CEL Biscarosse range in France at the end of December 2000 from a Mirage 2000N. The first British firing occurred on 25 May 2001 from a Tornado flying from BAE Warton.

Operational Service
Storm Shadow entered service with the Royal Air Force in late 2001. It was first used during the 2003 invasion of Iraq by No. 617 Squadron. The integration of the missile to the Tornado aircraft had been brought forward "considerably ahead of when it had been planned" as an urgent operational requirement.

During the NATO intervention in the Libyan Civil War, the Storm Shadow/SCALP-EG was fired at pro-Gaddafi targets by French Air Force Rafales and Italian Air Force and Royal Air Force Tornadoes. Targets included the Al Jufra Air Base and a military bunker in Sirte, the home town of Libyan leader, Muammar Gaddafi. On the 14 December 2011, Italian Defence Officials noted that Italian Tornado IDS aircraft had fired between 20 and 30 Storm Shadows during the Libyan Campaign. This was the first time that Italian aircraft had fired the missile in live combat, and it was reported the missile had a 97 per cent success rate.

The first flight of Storm Shadow missiles on the Eurofighter Typhoon took place on 27 November 2013 at Decimomannu air base in Italy, and was performed by Alenia Aermacchi using instrumented production aircraft 2.

Manufacturer: MBDA
Unit cost: €2.48m (FY2011) (~US$3.3m)
Weight: 1,400 kg (3,086 lb)
Length: 6.5 m (21.3 ft)
Diameter: 500 mm (19.7 in)
Effective firing range: >1,000 km (540 nmi)
Engine: Microturbo
Wingspan: 2.85 m (9.4 ft)
Speed: 960 km/h (518 kn)
Guidance system: inertial guidance, topographic (TERCOM/TERPROM), active radar homing and infrared guidance, GPS
Accuracy: metric
Launch platforms:
Tornado
Typhoon
Gripen
Mirage
Rafale
FREMM frigates*, Barracuda submarines* (France)

* MBDA has developed a longer-range sea-launched variant for the French Navy, called Missile de Croisière Naval (MdCN standing for Naval Cruise Missile). It will be deployed on FREMM multipurpose frigates (from 2014) and on Barracuda class submarines (from 2017), using the A70 version of the Sylver launcher on the former and the 533 mm torpedo tubes on the latter. As the missile is not launched from a plane, as is SCALP/Storm Shadow, a booster has been included. The submarine version is encapsulated in an hydrodynamic hard container which is ejected when the missile reaches the surface. To provide a comparable range to the BGM-109 Tomahawk, the range of the MdCN (well over 1000 km) is significantly larger than the SCALP/Storm Shadow.

France originally ordered 50 MdCN for its FREMM frigates in 2006, with delivery expected in 2012. A further 100 surface-launched missiles were ordered in 2009, along with 50 for the planned Barracuda-class submarines. The €1.2bn (FY2011) project will deliver 200 missiles at a unit cost of €2.48m (~US$3.3m), or €6m (~US$8m) including development costs.

MdCN first flight test from a vertical launcher took place on 28 May 2010 and its first submarine launch test took place on 8 June 2011. MdCN 's first complete qualification firing took place on 9 July 2012 at the Biscarosse test range. During its third development firing, MdCN met all its test requirements perfectly including the validation of the terminal autonomously guided phase with IR target scenario reconnaissance, which provides the weapon with its exceptionally high precision. On 24 October 2012, MdCN was tested "end-to-end" in the submarine launch configuration for the first time, adjacent to the Île du Levant test centre.

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SKB
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Re: Storm Shadow Missile (RAF)

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Re: Storm Shadow Missile (RAF)

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Defiance
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Re: Storm Shadow Missile (RAF)

Post by Defiance »

Good to see, I'm still astounded where over on TD it was alleged that Storm Shadow was accurate such that the second missile could pass through the entry hole created by the first.

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Re: Storm Shadow Missile (RAF)

Post by Timmymagic »

It will be interesting to see the breakdown of the contract. Particularly how much each party is paying in. The French were going to reduce ther stockpile of SCALP to c100. The UK was going to retain c400. It would be interesting to see if the French had decided to retain a larger number.

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Re: Storm Shadow Missile (RAF)

Post by ArmChairCivvy »

Timmymagic wrote: see if the French had decided to retain a larger number
Their works per missile woud have to be much more extennsive if both sides are making the same savings (50m)
Ever-lasting truths: Multi-year budgets/ planning by necessity have to address the painful questions; more often than not the Either-Or prevails over Both-And.
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Frenchie
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Re: Storm Shadow Missile (RAF)

Post by Frenchie »

France had ordered 500 SCALP. More than a hundred were fired at the war, in Libya and the Middle East. I don't know how much will be renovated for the moment.

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Re: Storm Shadow Missile (RAF)

Post by ArmChairCivvy »

Timmymagic wrote:The UK was going to retain c400.
Frenchie wrote:France had ordered 500 SCALP. More than a hundred were fired at the war
Sounds like stock levels are about the same, so no magic being worked on one party's missiles - costing much more
Ever-lasting truths: Multi-year budgets/ planning by necessity have to address the painful questions; more often than not the Either-Or prevails over Both-And.
If everyone is thinking the same, then someone is not thinking (attributed to Patton)

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Re: Storm Shadow Missile (RAF)

Post by ArmChairCivvy »

Which then reminds me of Spear3 being a light-weight (literally, not as a product)
... anyone heard of Spear 4 lately? Bearing in mind that the naming was for a capabilty, in each class required; before one manufacturer v cleverly "stole it" for their own product
Ever-lasting truths: Multi-year budgets/ planning by necessity have to address the painful questions; more often than not the Either-Or prevails over Both-And.
If everyone is thinking the same, then someone is not thinking (attributed to Patton)

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Re: Storm Shadow Missile (RAF)

Post by Gabriele »

SPEAR 4 is the Storm Shadow life-extension (and upgrade, although this seems to have been killed off to save money. Years ago they were looking at a new terminal seeker, including LIDAR technology, to give it a capability against relocatable or even mobile targets, but don't think the current contract includes anything of the sort).

SPEAR 5 is the Future Cruise and Anti-Ship Missile, and it won't go anywhere before 2032, since they are giving 2032 as the new OSD for Storm Shadow. The Royal Navy will better not wait out on that one...
You might also know me as Liger30, from that great forum than MP.net was.

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Re: Storm Shadow Missile (RAF)

Post by ArmChairCivvy »

Gabriele wrote: SPEAR 5 is the Future Cruise and Anti-Ship Missile, and it won't go anywhere before 2032
So the Perseus (concept) will be named Double Spear then (for the dual use)?

Just joking. I understand that even Spear had a hardt ime gaining the pronce stand (Spear3) against the competition.
Ever-lasting truths: Multi-year budgets/ planning by necessity have to address the painful questions; more often than not the Either-Or prevails over Both-And.
If everyone is thinking the same, then someone is not thinking (attributed to Patton)

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Re: Storm Shadow Missile (RAF)

Post by Gabriele »

I guess SPEAR 3 will eventually get an actual name. SPEAR stands for Selective Precision Effects At Range, and "3" is Capability 3. SPEAR is composed of (unless something changed behind the curtains):

SPEAR 1 - Paveway IV developments
SPEAR 2 - Brimstone related developments and, eventually, its replacement
SPEAR 3
SPEAR 4 - Storm Shadow life extension / upgrade
SPEAR 5 - FCASW

As for Perseus, people keep bringing it up, but it was just a concept showcased by MBDA and it might or might not be developed into the actual FCASW. We are almost certainly never going to see an operational "Perseus" as it was showcased.
You might also know me as Liger30, from that great forum than MP.net was.

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ArmChairCivvy
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Re: Storm Shadow Missile (RAF)

Post by ArmChairCivvy »

Gabriele wrote:SPEAR 1 - Paveway IV developments
SPEAR 2 - Brimstone related developments and, eventually, its replacement
SPEAR 3
SPEAR 4 - Storm Shadow life extension / upgrade
SPEAR 5 - FCASW
Not poking fun at the prgrm (exceptionally well thought out), but the ",,,nothing" on one line was the thrust of my comment; and there was stiff competition for it, too.
Ever-lasting truths: Multi-year budgets/ planning by necessity have to address the painful questions; more often than not the Either-Or prevails over Both-And.
If everyone is thinking the same, then someone is not thinking (attributed to Patton)

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Re: Storm Shadow Missile (RAF)

Post by RetroSicotte »

Frenchie wrote:France had ordered 500 SCALP. More than a hundred were fired at the war, in Libya and the Middle East. I don't know how much will be renovated for the moment.
France made an announcement at some point they are dropping to 100 missiles, likely to free up funds for the Navy's version. So likely thats the renovation number.

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Re: Storm Shadow Missile (RAF)

Post by Frenchie »

Before being revised in July 2015, the Military Programming Act (MPL) 2014-2019 planned to renovate only 100 SCALP missiles. And a contract along these lines should have been awarded in 2016.
Following the update of the Military Programming Act of 2014-2019, the number of renovated SCALP will be defined at its launch, said a Senate report, published in the context of the 2015 budget debates.
So I do not have an answer for the moment.

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Re: Storm Shadow Missile (RAF)

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Luke jones
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Re: Storm Shadow Missile (RAF)

Post by Luke jones »

All
Are there any reliable figures as to numbers of Storm Shadow purchased originally and numbers retained after the upgrade? I would have thought the RAF has expended a decent number during Iraq/Libya/Syria.
Thanks

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Re: Storm Shadow Missile (RAF)

Post by jimthelad »

Probably not best to air that really. OPSEC.

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Re: Storm Shadow Missile (RAF)

Post by RetroSicotte »

Luke jones wrote:All
Are there any reliable figures as to numbers of Storm Shadow purchased originally and numbers retained after the upgrade? I would have thought the RAF has expended a decent number during Iraq/Libya/Syria.
Thanks
It's public knowledge that France went down to 100 not too long ago (likely to fund the naval version), but the RAF's stock is a complete unknown I believe, probably as it should be with such strategic weapons.

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Re: Storm Shadow Missile (RAF)

Post by Luke jones »

jimthelad wrote:Probably not best to air that really. OPSEC.
RetroSicotte wrote:
Luke jones wrote:All
Are there any reliable figures as to numbers of Storm Shadow purchased originally and numbers retained after the upgrade? I would have thought the RAF has expended a decent number during Iraq/Libya/Syria.
Thanks
It's public knowledge that France went down to 100 not too long ago (likely to fund the naval version), but the RAF's stock is a complete unknown I believe, probably as it should be with such strategic weapons.
Roger that lads
Seems to be a great bit of kit

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Re: Storm Shadow Missile (RAF)

Post by KyleG »

The original RAF order was for 900 as per Hansard. I can't remember the exact figures but I think publicly the total number of Storm Shadows used by the RAF is around 100. Obviously the exact remaining amount of the original 900, aside from expended rounds, isn't likely to be publicized.

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Re: Storm Shadow Missile (RAF)

Post by shark bait »

they also wrote a load of stock off to save money.
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Re: MBDA Storm Shadow Missile (RAF)

Post by Timmymagic »

RetroSicotte wrote:'s public knowledge that France went down to 100 not too long ago (likely to fund the naval version), but the RAF's stock is a complete unknown I believe, probably as it should be with such strategic weapons.
Pretty certain its c400 for the UK these days.

And it has been published somewhere, probably Hansard.

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Re: MBDA Storm Shadow Missile (RAF)

Post by leonard »

And the latest news is that the Storm Shadow Missile will go to Ukraine as UK military assistance to the Ukrainian Air Force.

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Re: MBDA Storm Shadow Missile (RAF)

Post by Phil Sayers »

Not sure 'long range weapons' means Storm Shadow. Maybe but would need to either rapidly develop a means of ground launching it or else integrate it on Ukraine's existing MiG-29, SU-27 and SU-24. The latter has been done with HARM (only on MiG-29s I think) but cruise missiles may be a harder technical challenge?

It could instead mean helping Ukraine with their drone programme as suggested here:

https://t.co/RW5bZNiYKy

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