The Spanish Ministry of Defence (MOD) and TAURUS Systems GmbH (TSG) signed a contract on 26th September in Madrid for an upgrade and maintenance of the operational capability of the TAURUS KEPD 350 Weapon System used by the Spanish Air Force.
The contract value is just below 30 million Euros.
The TAURUS KEPD 350 has been in the inventory of the Spanish Air Force for 10 years. It is today operated on the EF-18 fighter aircraft (Spanish variant of F/A-18 Hornet). The advanced stand-off missile TAURUS KEPD 350 provides, with its very long range and a unique intelligent warhead, an important strategic and tactical advantage to the Spanish armed forces. It is optimized for attacking deep buried bunkers and infrastructure even in anti-access and area denied environments.
As part of the contract the operational capability of the Spanish TAURUS will be updated by robustification and improvement of the navigation system. This will increase the survivability considerably beyond the original configuration. With the update, the Weapon System is prepared for highly defended modern scenarios and joint operations environments. The project will start immediately.
TAURUS Systems GmbH (TSG) was founded in 1998 by its shareholders MBDA Deutschland GmbH of Germany and Saab Dynamics AB of Sweden.
The company acts as prime contractor and design authority for the TAURUS KEPD 350E weapon system. The expertise of TSG covers all aspects regarding the development and manufacture of stand-off weapon systems ranging from initial concept studies to fully developed, ready-to-operate integrated system solutions, such as ‘effects-based operations’. It also supports complete solutions during the whole life cycle of each weapon system.
TAURUS KEPD 350
Taurus KEPD 350 is an advanced, modular stand-off air-launched cruise missile (ALCM) system, manufactured by Taurus Systems, a joint venture between Germany’s MBDA Deutschland GmbH and Sweden’s Saab Dynamics AB.
The missile system can be used for for precision strikes against bunkers and other hardened, deeply buried targets, as well as high-value point and area targets such as large radar stations.
Taurus is powered by a turbofan engine and has a cruising speed of Mach 0.8–0.9. The missile incorporates stealth characteristics and has an official range in excess of 500 kilometres (300 mi).
The double 500-kilogram (1,100 lb) warhead, called Mephisto (Multi-Effect Penetrator HIghly Sophisticated and Target Optimised), features a precharge and initial penetrating charge to clear soil or enter a bunker, then a variable delay fuze to control detonation of the main warhead. The missile also includes counter measures as a self-defence mechanism.
The missile weighs about 1,400 kg (3,100 lb) and has a maximum body diameter of 1 metre (3.3 ft). Intended targets are hardened bunkers; command, control, and communications facilities; airfield and port facilities; AMS and ammunition storage; ships in port or at sea; and bridges.
The missile can be carried by Panavia Tornado, Eurofighter Typhoon, Saab Gripen, Boeing F/A-18 Hornet, and Boeing F-15K Eagle aircraft and is in service with Germany, Spain and South Korea.