The Czech Republic Chose Israeli Air Defence Systems Rafael SPYDER

 27. 09. 2020      category: Army of the Czech Republic

The Czech Republic, represented by the Ministry of Defence of the Czech Republic, has begun official negotiations with Israel on the possibility of supplying new air defence systems of the SPYDER type for the Czech Army (We have already written about the SPYDER system as a possible replacement for the 2K12M KUB). The task of the new air defence missile systems will be to protect groupings of ground forces, important airports, industrial centres, nuclear power plants and other designated facilities.

spyder_sr Picture: Launching device of the SPYDER-SR system | Rafael Advanced Defence Systems

SPYDER PVO systems from the Israeli company Rafael Advanced Defence Systems are among the short to medium range systems. In the armament of the Czech army, they should replace the already obsolete Soviet 2K12 KUB air defence systems - "Three fingers of death". According to published materials, Israeli systems are effective in combat against helicopters, airplanes, cruise missiles, some types of air-to-ground air ammunition, and also drones.  

For the time being, the Czech Army should acquire four batteries consisting of a command and control post, a post with a multi-purpose 3D radar and four firing posts for guided missiles. All posts are designed to be highly mobile, on wheeled chassis and transportable by transport aircraft. The Czech Army quite understandably requires Tatra 815-7 chassis. 

The Ministry of Defence of the Czech Republic intends to spend a maximum of ten billion crowns on the SPYDER systems. The signing of the contract is expected at the beginning of 2021 and the start of deliveries in 2023. The Ministry of Defence of the Czech Republic preferred the Israeli Rafael SPYDER systems to the Norwegian-American Kongsberg-Raytheon NASAMS (National Advanced Surface to Air Missile System). 

Among the conditions for the purchase of systems is the acquisition of a share for Czech industry. It should be at least 30 % of the contract value. Logistic support and service for the entire life of the systems (a period of at least 20 years is stated) must be provided by an entity based in the Czech Republic.  

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Picture: Launching device of the SPYDER-SR system on the Tatra chassis | Wikimedia Commons

SPYDER systems use ground-based versions of Israeli Python 5 short-range guided missiles with infra-red guidance, and Derby medium-range guided missiles with active radar guidance. Both types of missiles are equipped with acceleration rocket boosters of various sizes for launch from the ground launcher, depending on the variant of the system. 

Rafael offers customers four basic variants of SPYDER systems with different maximum ranges. The SR (Short Range) version has the shortest range, about 20 km. The ER (Extended Range) version has a maximum range of around 40 km, the MR (Medium Range) version about 60 km and the LR (Long Range) version about 80 km. Launching stations can also be equipped with a different number of tubes with missiles, according to the customer's wishes and the possibilities of the chosen chassis. 

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Picture: SPYDER-MR launcher set | Rafael Advanced Defence Systems

Different versions of radars are also offered for the systems, varying in their capabilities and range. 
It is not yet clear which version of the SPYDER systems and which version of radars will the Czech Republic choose. The financial possibilities will be what decides - i.e. a ceiling of ten billion crowns.