Two MBDA Italian Aster surface-to-air anti-missiles (SAAM/IT) have been successfully launched from the Italian Navy’s Conti di Cavour aircraft carrier to demonstrate the missile’s effectiveness.

The test-fire demonstrated the combat management system’s ability to target threats and to designate the SAAM/IT system to neutralise a threat.

The launches were carried out in two different modes, one in autonomous (self-controlled) mode and the other in integrated mode, controlled by the combat system.

The autonomous mode launch was to test the SAAM/IT system’s ability to search, identify and intercept an attacking sea-skimmer missile.

Under the Franco-Italian future surface-to-air family (FSAF) programme, both countries have agreed to develop and produce a family of naval platform and ground-based air defence systems for their armed forces.