CAMM (missile family)

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MBDA Sea Ceptor graphic.jpg
An MBDA computer generated graphic showing a CAMM missile in flight.
Type CAMM:
Short/medium range anti-aircraft and anti-missile missile.
Medium range anti-aircraft and anti-missile missile.
Place of origin United Kingdom (CAMM)
Italy (CAMM-ER)
Service history
In service 2016
Production history
Manufacturer MBDA UK (CAMM)
Weight CAMM: 99 kg[1]
CAMM-ER: 160 kg[2] (<250 kg, missile with canister)
Length CAMM: 3.2 m[1]
CAMM-ER: 4.0 m[2] (canister, 4,4 m)
Diameter CAMM: 166 mm[1]
CAMM-ER: 190 mm[2] (canister, 27.5 × 27.5 cm)
Warhead Directed fragmentation.
Contact or proximity.

Engine Solid-fuel rocket motor.
CAMM: <1–25+ km[1][nb 1]
CAMM-ER: <1–45+ km[2]
Speed Mach 3 (1,020 m/s)[1][4][5][6][3]


  • Maritime platforms.
  • Land based platforms.
  • Aircraft.

The CAMM (Common Anti-Air Modular Missile) series is a family[7] of surface-to-air and air-to-air missiles developed by MBDA for the United Kingdom. CAMM shares some common features and components with the ASRAAM air-to-air missile, but with updated electronics and an active radar homing seeker. It is envisioned that the missile will be introduced into all three service branches of the British Armed Forces and is currently scheduled to enter service starting 2016. The Common Anti-Air Modular Missile is intended to replace the Sea Wolf missile on Type 23 frigates of the Royal Navy, the Rapier missile in British Army service and contribute to the eventual replacement of ASRAAM in service with the Royal Air Force.

Three variants of the missile have been designed for use across the Air, Land and Maritime environments. These are designated as CAMM(A), CAMM(L) and CAMM(M) respectively. The maritime variant is known as Sea Ceptor in the Royal Navy.[8]


The Common Anti-Air Modular Missile has its roots in a Technology Demonstration Programme (TDP), jointly funded by MBDA and the Ministry of Defence as part of the United Kingdom's Future Local Area Air Defence System (FLAADS).[9] Phase 1 of the TDP worked on technologies for soft vertical launch, the low-cost active radar seeker, a dual-band two-way datalink and a programmable open systems architecture.[9] Phase 2 began in 2008 and covered the manufacture of flight-worthy subsystems, mid-course guidance firings and captive airborne seeker trials on a Qinetiq Andover experimental aircraft.[9] The Soft Vertical Launch was proven over a series of trials, culminating in a successful truck launch in May 2011.[10] The MoD decision on the business case for the naval variant was scheduled for 2010.[9] After publishing the Strategic Defence and Security Review in October 2010, the business case was approved in April 2011.

FLAADS is part of a wider UK 'Complex Weapons' programme to deliver a variety of UK industry based weapons. FLAADS is intended to deliver a common weapons platform (the Common Anti-Air Modular Missile (CAMM)) to equip forces in the air, land and maritime environments.[11][12] During the early stages of the FLAADS programme, requirements were identified for the new missile to meet the known and unknown air threats of not only the present, but those well into the future too. Thought was particularly given to meeting a target set "of complex airborne targets which are typified by high speed, rapid evasive manoeuvres, low signatures and advanced countermeasure[s]."[13]


  • In January 2012, MBDA and the Ministry of Defence announced a contract worth £483 million to fully develop the maritime variant of CAMM known as Sea Ceptor for the Royal Navy.[14]
  • In October 2013, the Royal New Zealand Navy selected the maritime version of CAMM to equip their frigates HMNZS Te Kaha and HMNZS Te Mana.[15]
  • In August 2014, the Chilean Navy emerged as a potential export customer for the maritime version of CAMM to equip their Type 23 frigates.[16]
  • In November 2014, the Brazilian Navy selected the maritime version of CAMM to equip their future Tamandaré-class corvettes.[17]
  • In January 2015, the Ministry of Defence announced that it had signed a development and manufacturing deal with MBDA in late December 2014.[18]
  • In May 2016, the Spanish Navy selected the naval version of the CAMM-ER to equip their future F-110 frigates.[19]


Design characteristics allow for low cost by modularity and aiming to minimise electromechanical complexity by implementing most functionality in software.[9] Additionally, the command and control software reuses over 75% of that developed for the PAAMS system.[10]

CAMM has a minimum operational range of less than 1 km and a maximum range greater than 25 km, although IHS Jane's reports that trials have a shown a capability of up to 60 km.[3] These ranges are significantly greater than the 1–10 km range of Sea Wolf and other systems CAMM will replace.[20] CAMM is 99 kilograms (218 lb) in weight, 3.2 metres (10 ft) in length, 166 millimetres (6.5 in) diameter and reaches generous supersonic speeds of Mach 3 (or 1,020 meters per second). CAMM is a ship point defence and local area defence missile designed to respond to sophisticated missile attacks and has the capability to defend against saturation attacks of supersonic anti-ship cruise missiles, aircraft and other high-performance targets.[6] It does this via multiple channels of fire, providing 360-degree coverage and high degrees of manoeuvrability. MBDA state that CAMM has a "high rate of fire against multiple simultaneous targets",[21] providing capabilities comparable to the Aster 15 missile. In flight, the missile can receive mid-course guidance via a datalink before the active homing radar seeker takes over for the final approach to target. This does away with the need for separate tracking radars, making CAMM compatible with any 2D or 3D surveillance radars and allows targets to be hit that are not in line-of-sight.[21]

CAMM comes in its own launch canisters, or alternately can be quad-packed into the SYLVER and Mark 41 vertical launching systems found on many warships.[1] Additionally, it can be fired from aircraft such as the Eurofighter Typhoon. The land and naval versions have folding tailfins[20] and both use a "soft vertical launch" system, whereby the missile is ejected from a tube by a piston. A short booster uses squib thrusters to point the missile at the target before the main motor fires.[20] The lack of toxic fumes on launch makes launches safer for users, avoids corrosion of the launch platform and the lack of exhaust vents allows the launch cells to be much more compact.

MBDA claim that CAMM has a "wide target set", including the capability to engage small naval vessels, which would give the missile a limited surface-to-surface role.[22]

The CAMM-ER (extended range variant) shares the same characteristics of the original CAMM with the exception of an additional booster which significantly increases the missiles engagement range, out to 45 km. The missile is 160 kilograms (350 lb) in weight, 4.2 metres (14 ft) in length, 190 millimetres (7.5 in) diameter.[2]


Air variant[edit]

CAMM(A) is the air-launched variant of the missile. Since the CAMM airframe is based on that of ASRAAM, the current dogfighting missile of the RAF and other airforces, MBDA say that CAMM is "easily adapted"[23] onto aircraft that now carry ASRAAM. There is no requirement to replace ASRAAM yet, but it is intended that CAMM will form the basis of the RAF's future short-range missile. The modularity of CAMM would lend itself to a family of missiles like the Vympel R-27/AA-10 "Alamo", which is carried in both radar-guided and infra-red versions by Russian planes.[24]

Land variant[edit]

CAMM(L) is the land-based variant and will replace the Rapier missile batteries of the British Army[10] from 2020 or so. Four three-pack launchers[20] are fitted to a self-contained "pallet" that can be fitted to a range of trucks.[25] The launch vehicle will not have its own radar, instead taking targeting information over a secure datalink as part of an integrated air-defence network[25] and using the active seeker head for terminal guidance. Some reports have called the land variant, "Land Ceptor".[26][27]

Maritime variant[edit]

CAMM(M), the maritime variant known as Sea Ceptor, will be the first variant in service, replacing the Sea Wolf missile system on the Type 23 frigates from 2016.[28] Sea Ceptor can be packed much more tightly, with up to four missiles fitting into the space occupied by one Seawolf.[29] It will also equip the Global Combat Ships expected to enter service around 2021, and be an available option on any export versions of the Global Combat Ship.[10] MBDA is working with the MoD, BAE Systems and Qinetiq to integrate Sea Ceptor with the Type 23 combat system.[9] This work is centred at the Type 23 shore integration facility at Portsdown, near Portsmouth.[9][dead link]

In September 2013 the MOD agreed a £250 million contract with MBDA for Sea Ceptor.[30]

Extended range variant[edit]

CAMM-ER is an extended range variant, which as with the baseline CAMM, is intended to provide a "common solution" to the air, land and maritime environments.[2] Developed since 2013 by MBDA Italy and AVIO Spa for Italian MoD, to update Italian Air Force SPADA batteries and Italian Army Skyguard-Aspide batteries.


Map of CAMM operators in blue

Current operators[edit]

 United Kingdom
 New Zealand

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Although trials have a shown a capability of up to 60 km[3]


  1. ^ a b c d e f "Common Anti-Air Modular Missile" (PDF). MBDA Missile Systems. February 2011. Archived from the original (PDF) on 20 May 2013. Retrieved 18 October 2011. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f CAMM-ER Datasheet Archived April 2, 2015, at the Wayback Machine.,
  3. ^ a b c d e "UK orders next-generation air defence system from MBDA". IHS Jane's. 15 January 2015. Retrieved 17 January 2015. 
  4. ^ Royal Navy gets mega missile which travels at three times the speed of sound January 2010, Archived February 1, 2012, at the Wayback Machine.
  5. ^ "Navy unveils new missile capable of destroying enemy weapons at THREE times the speed of sound". 
  6. ^ a b Naval technology: CAMM, accessed August 2013
  7. ^ MBDA - CAMM family Archived August 23, 2013, at the Wayback Machine.
  8. ^ "New Missile system to shield the fleet from air attack". Royal Navy. 31 January 2012. Archived from the original on 2 February 2012. Retrieved 31 January 2012. 
  9. ^ a b c d e f g Scott, Richard (11 September 2009). "UK’s common anti-air missile forges ahead...". IHS Jane's. Retrieved 17 October 2011. 
  10. ^ a b c d Scott, Richard (15 September 2011). "MBDA targets success for FLAADS". IHS Jane's. Retrieved 17 October 2011. 
  11. ^ Future Local Area Air Defence System Hansard, 7 Mar 2012
  12. ^ Complex Weapons Hansard, 15 July 2008
  13. ^ FLAADS Archived May 13, 2014, at the Wayback Machine. MBDA, June 2010
  14. ^ Naval Industry News - UK Sea Ceptor, MBDA’s Next Generation Air Defence System Gets Go Ahead For Royal Navy Frigates, 31 January 2012,
  15. ^ a b "Sea Ceptor selected for ANZAC Frigate Update". MBDA Missile Systems. 7 October 2013. Retrieved 7 October 2013. 
  16. ^ "MBDA: "Chile podría adoptar el misil Sea Ceptor en la modernización de sus fragatas tipo 23"". infodefensa. 12 August 2014. Retrieved 12 January 2015. 
  17. ^ a b "Brazilian Navy Selects MBDA’s Sea Ceptor for Air Defense". MBDA. 1 December 2014. Retrieved 9 December 2014. 
  18. ^ "UK Signs Deal For New Air Defense Missile". 
  19. ^ (21 September 2015). "La idea de comunalidad de sistemas de MBDA cala en Europa - Noticias Infodefensa España". 
  20. ^ a b c d Sweetman, Bill (23 May 2011). "CAMM On Path To Replace Seawolf". Aviation Week. Retrieved 16 October 2011. 
  21. ^ a b MBDA data sheet: COMMON ANTI-AIR MODULAR MISSILE Archived May 20, 2013, at the Wayback Machine.
  22. ^ [1], ArmyRecognition
  24. ^ "I Think I CAMM: Britains Versatile Air Defense Missile". Retrieved 26 July 2016. 
  25. ^ a b Brown, Nick (8 July 2009). "The likely FLAADS: MBDA rolls out UK's new Rapier SAM replacement prototype". IHS Jane's. Retrieved 17 October 2011. 
  26. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2015-06-22. Retrieved 2015-06-22. 
  27. ^ "Supplies - 54096-2015 - TED Tenders Electronic Daily". 
  28. ^ "Press Information - CAMM" (PDF). MBDA Systems. June 2011. Retrieved 16 October 2011. 
  29. ^ "CAMM On Path To Replace Seawolf". Aviation Week. May 2011. Retrieved 14 September 2013. 
  30. ^ "Royal Navy missile contract sustains 500 UK jobs - News stories - GOV.UK". 
  31. ^ "MBDA’s Advanced Air Defence System for the British Army Enters Assessment Phase". MBDA Missile Systems. 1 May 2014. Retrieved 1 May 2014. 
  32. ^ "Royal Navy Missile Contract Sustains 500 UK Jobs". GOV.UK. 10 September 2013. Retrieved 1 May 2014. 
  33. ^ During, Nelson (2014-11-14). "MBDA e AVIBRAS anunciam projeto de Defesa Antiaérea de média altura" [MBDA and AVIBRAS announce medium range Air Defense project] (in Portuguese). DefesaNet. Retrieved 2016-11-11. 
  34. ^ Lockheed Martin Updates Chilean Frigates

Further reading[edit]