MBDA leads the counterattack to develop Europe's hypersonic interceptor of the future

After being ousted from the HYDEF program, the European missile manufacturer MBDA presents a new hypersonic interceptor to return to the race for the European anti-missile system

In November 2019, in response to announcements made by Vladimir Putin a year earlier regarding the entry into service of the Kinzhal airborne ballistic missile then presented as hypersonic, and the upcoming entry into service of the RS-28 Sarmat strategic basilica missile and its glider hypersonic Avangard, the TWISTER program for TIMELY WARNING AND INTERCEPTION WITH SPACE-BASED THEATER SURVEILLANCE was launched within the framework of the permanent European structured cooperation PESCO.

Led by France, this program which also brings together Finland, Italy, the Netherlands and Portugal, and later Germany, aims to develop a system capable of detecting, identifying and tracking hypersonic vehicles such as missiles and gliders, by combining space, land and airborne means.

Two years later, the European Union undertook to launch the logical extension of Twister, the program European Hypersonic Defense Interceptor or HYDEF, to develop an interceptor capable of engaging and destroying threats detected by Twister's systems.

A hypersonic interceptor will rely on the TWISTER detection system

The European missile manufacturer MBDA, the only European player to have actually developed an anti-ballistic system with the Aster Block 1 and Block 1NT, thought then that it would quite naturally lead the European program.

In fact, his surprise was commensurate with his disappointment when in July 2022, Brussels announced that the design of the European hypersonic interceptor had been awarded to a consortium made up of Spain, Germany, Belgium, Poland, the Czech Republic and Sweden, as well as Norway, which is not a member of the EU, and especially companies with significantly less experience and know-how in this field than MBDA.


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