The RBS 70 is one of Bofors most well-known and established air defence system ever. This air defence missile system is operational in 13 customer countries all over the world. In addition to the Army system, it is also operational in some countries in other services as Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps. The RBS 70 has been under constant improvement adapted to the most sophisticated future threat and using the latest solutions in missile technology.
The RBS 70 was initially developed for the Swedish Armed Forces requiring:
- Long intercept range in the head-on sector
- High accuracy and kill probability
- Immune to all known hostile and natural jamming
- Down to the ground capability
- Command to Line of Sight
- Growth potential to night capability
Sweden's RBS-70 antiaircraft missile, which has a laser homing system, is intended to intercept subsonic and supersonic low-altitude airborne targets flying on collision courses. It consists of a laser homing system, a stand and seat for the operator, and a missile carried in a launch tube-container. It weighs 80 kg. The system is carried disassembled by a crew of three, who can assemble it in 30 sec. The missile has a high-explosive warhead with proximity and remote laser fuzes.
The operator detects an airborne target by independent visual search, or by target indication from a radar station. In the latter case data defining the coordinates, speed and course of the target and fire control commands are transmitted to the system by a radio or a wire conductor. After taking rough aim the operator locks the target into the optical sight and then uses a coordinate grid to measure the range to it. Next he superposes the cross-hairs of the sight over the target and turns on the IFF instrument. After making his decision he turns on the laser unit and launches the missile. The missile is guided to the target simply by keeping the cross-hairs of the sight over the target. This maintains the direction of the laser beam which the missile rides. A laser radiation receiver in the tail section of the missile perceives the missile's deviations from the laser beam and generates signals proportional to this deviation. An autopilot computer generates control commands to adjust the missile's flight on the basis of these signals. A variable focal length lens in the laser transmitter decreases the beam diameter as the missile approaches the target, thus raising guidance accuracy.
The laser beam guidance system used in the missile system is highly effective when intercepting low- flying targets, but it can be used only during the day, and in good weather. Bofors selected laser guidance solution in order to fulfil these essential requirements. RBS 70 was the first laser guided defence missile system in the world, which means Bofors had a long experience in this technology. From the very first, the RBS 70 was developed as a complete missile system and also given a potential of integration with most wheeled and tracked vehicles. The RBS 70 is superior to competitive man-portable air defence missile systems. Because of its 7 km intercept range in the head-on sector range it really belongs to a class other than the VSHORAD.
In its basic configuration the RBS 70 comprises a tripod, sight and missile. In a complete system configuration several fire units can be connected to a surveillance radar enabling all C3I functions. A number of radar options with ready interface are available. And automatic threat evaluation is a part of the combat control at two separate levels.
If RBS 70 isn't interfaced with a surveillance radar it can operate autonomously. In the RBS 70 VLM (Vehicle Launched Missile) for wheeled and tracked applications, the RBS 70 can easily be dismounted and used independently. With a Clip-on Night Device, designated COND, the RBS 70 can operate 24 hours a day. A complete RBS 70 fire unit consisting of the weapon itself, COND and Battlefield Management Terminal (BMT) requires only batteries as power supply. No cooling gas is required.
The Missile Mk 2 operates with the most modern control method in missile guidance, the Linear Quadratic Method, based on the Kalman Theory. The missile's shaped charge is surrounded by more than 3 000 tungsten pellets. The jet of the shaped charge can penetrate any aerial threat. And if the target is carrying armour the penetration will be followed immediately by a severe behind the armour effect. In some intercept situations the combined effect of shaped charge and tungsten pellets will cause a devastating effect. The laser operated proximity fuze is, like the rest of the system, unjammable. The high system reliability with the latest missile is more than 0.93 verified by big customers as the Swedish and Norwegian Armed Forces.
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