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Estonia has received the first SPIKE SR missiles from EuroSpike. After operational testing and training of personnel, the Estonian Defence Forces demonstrated the weapon system in front of international experts and the SPIKE User Club.

From a field position, the infantrymen fired two missiles at targets at 1,500 m and 1,800 m respectively. The effect of the tandem HEAT warheads could be estimated at the hard targets, and it was shown that the soldiers had the system under control after only a short training period. The demonstration also included the presentation of the training equipment for training in and outdoors.

In June 2019, Estonia ordered an unspecified number of missile systems from EuroSpike, the joint venture of Diehl Defence, Rheinmetall Defence and Rafael Advanced Defence Systems, under a seven-year framework agreement for €40M. An initial tranche of 18 systems for delivery in 2020 was ordered immediately.

The order consists of missiles with warheads and reusable Integrated Control Launch Units (ICLU). The system is packaged in a 98 cm long container and can be easily transported on foot with one person sufficient for operation.

The shoulder-launched, approximately 10kg guided missile is designed for modern infantry warfare with its increased range allowing it to engage mainly armoured targets at ranges of up to 2,000 metres.

The Bundeswehr has fielded SPIKE LR with ICLU under the name Multi-Role Light Guided Missile System (MELLS). With its shaped charge, MELLS can engage armoured vehicles at ranges of up to 4km. Data transmission via optical fibres and electro-optical sensors (with infrared detector) enables the Fire-and-Forget and Fire-and-Observe modes of operation.

Gerhard Heiming