The Franco-British ANL / Sea Venom missile from MBDA qualified for the French Navy

Since the AS-12 missiles were withdrawn from service in the 80s, the helicopters of the French Navy no longer had the capacity to implement anti-ship missiles, with the notable exception of the Super Frelon which could implement the AM-39 Exocet missile, which also leaks, withdrawn from service in 2010. It is to overcome this failure that the French and the British agreed, in 2010, to develop a new light anti-ship missile jointly, during the agreements of Lancaster House which also covered the development of the Future Anti-Ship Missile / Future cruise missile, FCAS aborted combat drone program, and the joint mine warfare program.

The design of this missile was naturally entrusted to the European missile company MBDA, and took the name of ANL (for Anti-ship Léger) in France, and of Sea Venom in Great Britain. With a range of 20 km, this 2,5 m long missile with a mass of 110 kg, can be used by medium and light helicopters, such as the British Wildcat and the future HIL H160M Cheetah which will equip the frigates from the French Navy from 2027. It has an uncooled infrared seeker and, like the MMP anti-tank missile of the same MBDA, it allows the crew to direct the missile throughout the flight if necessary, while being able to detect its target after launch. It also offers strike capabilities on land, and target discrimination in a dense environment, so as not to hit civilian ships. Carrying a military load of 30 kg, it is able to take advantage of ships the size of a corvette, but also fast ships such as missile launchers.

success of the first qualification firing of the light anti-ship missile anl sea venom Defense News | France | anti-ship missiles
Close-up of the ANL missile just before the impact on its target during the tests on February 20 in the Ile du Levant polygon.

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