The Army successfully tested the Israeli Spike non-line-of-sight (NLOS) missile system by firing two rounds from the Apache Echo Model V6 -- the most recent upgrade to the Apache helicopter, Lockheed Martin announced last week.
Spike NLOS is a “multipurpose, electro-optical/infrared missile system” made by a joint team from Lockheed Martin and Israel’s Rafael Advanced Defense Systems that can reach ranges of up to 32 kilometers, according to Lockheed. The system can be integrated with ground, aviation or maritime platforms and can strike distant and “geographically concealed” targets. It also provides imagery and man-in-the-loop control during the missile’s flight, according to Lockheed.
The Army completed live fire testing of the missile system at Yuma Proving Ground in Arizona “to validate the integration” onto the V6 Apache, Nelson Ballew, a spokesman for the service’s Future Vertical Lift Cross Functional Team, wrote to Inside Defense on Monday.
“This effort, led by the U.S. Army Capabilities Development Command Aviation & Missile Center in partnership with the Army Futures Command Future Vertical Lift Cross-Functional Team and Army Aviation Program Executive Office will ensure we meet directed requirement timelines and field this critical capability to the warfighter in fiscal year 24,” he wrote.
Two rounds were fired at a stationary target from the aircraft during the test on Jan. 26, according to a press release from Lockheed last week.
The Spike NLOS system will next start testing to qualify the design for airworthiness release, according to Lockheed. After airworthiness release is awarded, the Army plans to field it on the Apache Echo Model V6 platforms by September 2024.