Crotale: All-wheather Short Range Air Defence System developed by France.
Entered service with the Greek Air Force in 2003.
The latest version of the “Crotale-NG”, system was designed to provide coverage to front line troops, tanks, armored vehicles against aircrafts and helicopters.
The “Crotale-NG”, A/A system incorporates the “VT-1” missile, developed by the American company LTV and the French firm “Thomson-CSF for the USA within the Faad Army program.
According to representatives of “Thomson-CSF” this A/A system was developed as an answer to modern threats like all-weather aircrafts and helicopters.
It is still being manufactured. The production line started in 1989 and in 1990 entered service.
Besides French Armed Forces (Air Force – 12 airborne container type units), the system has been exported to other countries like Finland (Army – 20 units on vehicles Sisu XA-180), Greece (9-11 systems for the Air Force and the Navy), and also Holland, Saudi Arabia, South Korea and Oman.
Crotale NG/GR © Konstantinos Panitsidis
The system is embedded in a towed container which consists of:
Search and locking radar
Fire control system
and the octaple missile launcher
The “Crotele-NG” version is practically a new system, thought it was based on a series of modernized earlier versions.
Search radar TSM (TRS) 2630 © Konstantinos Panitsidis
Search radar TSM (TRS) 2630, E-G band, with a rotation of 40 rpm. It has an advanced flat antenna, provides more resistance to jamming and can scan while the system is moving.
Maximum detection range is 20000 m for aircrafts and about 8000 m for helicopters. Maximum detection height is 5000 m.
It's capable of tracking 8 targets while continuing the detection.
Detection radar © Konstantinos Panitsidis
Detection radar: Ku band tracking mono-pulse radar (J), with increased jamming resistance. Provides a maximum range up to 30000 m and can track aircrafts and helicopters, even when they fly with speeds more than 2 Mach.
Optic-electronic tracking system © Konstantinos Panitsidis
Optic-electronic tracking system: it includes the FLIR Castrol Thermal Tv Camera, with a maximum range of 15 km, with two view fields (8,1o x 5,5o and 2,7o x 1,8o), a TV camera J3 with a range of 10 km and the goniometer IR with a range of 10 km.
VT-1 missile (Vought-Thomson), that was developed by “LTV” under a contract with “Thomson-CSF” (in 1986), with a radio command guidance system. Maximum range of the missile is 10 km, with a load limit of 35g at 3,5 Mach, resulting to a target locking from a distance of 8 km in 10 s. .
VT-1 missile © Konstantinos Panitsidis (click on image)
Crotale NG-it has an octaple VT-1 missile launcher© Konstantinos Panitsidis