BERLIN, April 29 (UPI) -- A new air and missile defense system to replace Patriot and Nike missiles has been talked up in Europe by Lockheed Martin and missile-maker MBDA.
The system is MEADS, or the Medium Extended Air Defense System, under development by Germany, Italy and the United States.
Results of development testing will enable Germany to build its future air and missile defense system, they said at an event in Berlin, held by the German Council on Foreign Relations.
“The collaboration between Germany, Italy and the United States on the Medium Extended Air Defense System is a shining example of strength in the face of today’s threats,” said Lockheed Martin Chairman, President and CEO Marillyn (CQ) Hewson. “MEADS delivers the absolute best capability to protect European air space from tactical ballistic missiles, cruise missiles and aircraft.”
Added MBDA Germany Managing Director Thomas Homberg: “The risks from current and future threats can only be countered effectively and efficiently using leading-edge technologies, as the MEADS program delivers.
“For Germany as well as its cooperation partners, the MEADS technology development results create the prerequisites for building sustainable air and missile defense tailored to current and future threats, and thus provide a substantial contribution to NATO missile defense.”
MEADS is a mobile system with an open, expandable plug-and-fight system architecture developed to replace the Patriot system in Germany and the Nike system used by Italy. Development of MEADS began in 2004 and has so far demonstrated a 360-degree, dual intercept against a tactical ballistic missile and an air-breathing target approaching from opposite directions.
The system uses the hit-to-kill technology of the Patriot Advanced Capability missile system.