The New Zealand Ministry of Defence (MoD) has selected MBDA to provide Sea Ceptor for the local area air defence (LAAD) system in support of the Royal New Zealand Navy‘s (RNZN) Anzac-class vessels systems upgrade programme.
Subject to government final approval, the MBDA-built Sea Ceptor will be deployed onboard HMNZ Te Kaha (F77) and Te Mana (F111) to offer air defence capability for the host ships and nearby allied vessels.
The New Zealand MoD defence deputy secretary, Des Ashton, said that the Anzac-class vessels systems upgrade programme aims to restore the ship’s combat capability and utility to a comparative level to that of a current generation, new release combat system.
"The LAAD Sea Ceptor system is a key component of the overall project, ensuring that crucial constituents of the RNZN fleet are best equipped to respond to the emerging threats and protect not only the frigates themselves, but also high value units in company," Ashton said.
Sea Ceptor can simultaneously deal with multiple targets, flying at speeds of up to Mach 3 and is based on the common anti-air modular missile (CAMM).
The UK’s international security strategy minister, Dr Andrew Murrison, said the New Zealand MoD is procuring Sea Ceptor and is planning to cross deck onto the Type 26 Global Combat Ship.
"The UK is immensely proud of this product, it is a real example of UK innovation and will form the bedrock of air defence for the Royal Navy for decades to come," Murrison said.
"This decision by New Zealand further demonstrates the strengthening of our maritime security cooperation."
Image: Illustration of the Sea Ceptor missile. Photo: copyright of MBDA 2013.