Russia's Defence Ministry recently said that Ukrainian aircraft had struck two industrial sites in the Russian-held city of Luhansk in eastern Ukraine with Storm Shadow missiles supplied by Britain.
About Storm Shadow Missile:
- It is a long-range cruise missile with stealth capabilities, jointly developed by the UK and France.
- The missile is intended to strike high-valued stationary assets such as airbases, radar installations, communications hubs and port facilities.
- Able to be operated in extreme conditions, the weapon offers operators a highly flexible, deep-strike capability based on a sophisticated mission planning system.
- The Storm Shadow is also in service with the air forces of Egypt, India, Italy, Greece, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
- It is typically launched from the air.
- It carries a 450kg conventional warhead to a range of up to 200 miles (300km).
- The missile weighs 1.3 tonnes and is just over 5m long.
- It is equipped with fire-and-forget technology and fully autonomous guidance.
- The missile is fitted with a passive imaging infrared seeker.
- The missile is programmed with every detail of the target and the path to be taken to reach the target prior to its launch.
- Once launched, the Storm Shadow drops to a low altitude to avoid detection by enemy radar before latching onto its target with the infrared seeker.
Q1) How does fire-and-forget missile work?
The fire-and-forget technology of advanced ATGMs such as the U.S. Javelin and the Israeli Spike, allows a soldier to select the target through an optical or infrared viewer attached to the missile's launch tube. Once fired, the missile flies to the target without further action from the operator.