BAE Systems missile technology lifts off.

BAE Systems Australia has celebrated the production of its 3,000th missile controller used to guide the Evolved Sea Sparrow Missile (ESSM).

Developed jointly by Australia, the United States and Canada, ESSM protects our warships against anti-ship missiles. BAE’s thrust vector controller guides the ESSM during the launch phase.

BAE’s Australian CEO Gabby Costigan said yesterday the company has delivered systems valued at more than $400 million.

“This is a great example of a global program that required world leading technology and the solution was found here in Australia,” she said.

“The ESSM program, together with the Nulka Active Missile Decoy program, have established BAE Systems as Australia’s capability provider of guided weapons.”

Nulka is a hovering rocket decoy used against sea skimming cruise missiles by the Royal Australian and US navies.

Costigan said production of an upgraded ESSM would begin in 2021 with BAE Systems also responsible for manufacturing the missile fuselage, guidance section internal structure, and telemetry transmitter.

Contracts would be worth about $32 million per year over the next decade.

Meanwhile Defence Connect reports the company has begun low-rate production of passive sensors to be installed in a new stealthy missile destined for the F-35 Lightning fighter.

The passive radio frequency (PRF) sensors are part of the Joint Strike Missile (JSM) developed with Kongsberg Defence to give the F-35 long-range anti-ship and land attack capability.

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Picture: BAE Systems Australia/ESSM launch.

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