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UK targets late 2020s for Type 45 ballistic missile defence

26th May 2022 - 14:00 GMT | by Harry Lye in London

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Type 45 destroyer HMS Defender fires an Aster missile. (Photo: UK MoD/ Crown Copyright)

Upgrades to UK RN Type 45 destroyers are designed to counter the increased threat anti-ship ballistic cruise missiles pose to Carrier Strike Groups and the wider fleet.

The UK has said it will be the first country in Europe to operate a maritime ballistic missile defence (BMD) capability that can detect and destroy anti-ship ballistic missiles through an upgrade to the RN's fleet of Daring-class Type 45 destroyers.

Under the Sea Viper Evolution Programme, the UK will join the OCCAR Aster Block 1 programme in a tri-nation agreement with France and Italy.

Plans will see the conversion of existing Aster missile stocks in the UK to the Aster 30 Block 1 standard, plus software updates to the Sampson multi-function radar (MFR) and Sea Viper

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