Sunday, November 21, 2010

1000 th Mica

October, 25th, the French weapon agency "DGA" has received the 1000th mica missile (An IR one) on the 1110 ordered for the french forces. the last one should be delivered by MBDA in 2012.

In addition to those 1000 french Mica, more than 1000 has been exported to foreign Air forces (Qatar, Taiwan, Greece, EAU) and navies (Morocco, Oman).

The DGA also points out 3 interesting features of the MICA :
  • It can be shot at a target behind the aircraft using third party initial designation through link 16.   
  • It has a internal multi target capability allowing each missile to optimize its detonation point in order to strike several  targets in close formation at once.
  • The IR version can be used as an IRST which can detect incoming enemy missiles in the front sector

To celebrate the event  we have made a commemorative drawing showing the Rafale with an hypothetical  load of 10 mica (6 EM and 4 IR)  :)
This very powerfull warload will probably never be cleared because the 2 hardpoints in the center of the fuselage seems to have been definitely discarded for the Mica despite what was demonstrated on the Rafale A, 20 years ago.

Rafale with a mica on the external wing hardpoint (Bourget 2009)
However, the 2 external hardpoints of the wings, which are not exploited yet, could soon receive the Mica. As far as we know, the wiring is there, and only the inflight tests remained to be done. For the record, it is mainly the UAE which had been pushing to integrate the Mica on those 2 hardpoints but the French Air Force had also shown some kind of interest for the matter... but as usual it will end up as a budget issue.

Also read : Mica replacement into question
Source : French Air Force and DGA

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