With the SAMP/T NG, the Mamba becomes a multi-layer anti-aircraft, anti-ballistic and anti-drone defense bubble from 2025.

Launched in 2021 by Paris and Rome, the new generation Medium Range Land Anti-Aircraft System, or SAMP/T NG, has until now aimed at significant improvements to the Mamba's radar and engagement module, in order to extend its capabilities. detection and control performance of the system, in particular to implement the new Aster 30 Block 1NT anti-ballistic missile.

It now seems that the new generation of the system will be much more advanced than initially announced, because it will be able to simultaneously install and control anti-ballistic and anti-aircraft protection bubbles at long, medium, short and very short range.

In doing so, the SAMP/T NG would become a multilayer defense system without equivalent in Europe, and more broadly, in the West, to ensure integrated defense against a very wide range of threats, ranging from ballistic missiles to artillery rockets, including the hypersonic glider, the cruise missile and the combat aircraft.

The SAMP/T Mamba, an anti-aircraft and anti-missile system that has proven itself in Ukraine

Designed by France and Italy, and entered service in 2008, the SAMP/T Mamba was the first European medium-range anti-aircraft system. It consists of an Engagement module, the heart of the system, accommodating 4 operators, as well as a PESA Arabel rotating radar designed by Thales, and 4 Launch Modules, each armed with 8 Aster 15 or Aster 30 missiles .

Arabel radar of SAMP/T Mamba
The PESA Arabel radar from Thales and the SAMP/T Mamba system

It makes it possible to place a protective bubble of 200 km radius around the Arabel radar against targets such as non-stealthy aircraft operating above the electromagnetic horizon, and of around a hundred km against a discreet fighter like the Rafale at medium altitude, and a few dozen km against a plane or a stealth missile.

It can, moreover, be used against terminal ballistic threats, with a fire envelope close to that of the Patriot PAC-3 MSE, but with greater maneuverability. The Patriot, on the other hand, has a more efficient radar, but which so far only covered 120°. Support modules complete the battery, including a generator, a mechanical workshop, an electronic workshop and two recharging modules.

Although having demonstrated great effectiveness during tests and exercises, the SAMP/T Mamba did not meet with the expected success on the international scene. Apart from France and Italy, its designers, it was only acquired by Singapore, it is true that they rave about the qualities of the Mamba, when asked about it.

The demonstrated effectiveness of the first Mamba battery sent by Italy and France to Ukraine, as well as the anti-ballistic performance of the Aster 30 missile against Houthi anti-ship missiles, have profoundly changed the image of SAMP/T Mamba, on the international scene, by MBDA's own admission.

New radars and new command and coordination system

As written previously, the SAMP/T NG was initially intended to enable the embarkation of a new firing radar to replace the Arabel of the Mamba, with the Groud Master 300 from Thales for France, and the Kronos from Leonardo for Italy.

SAMP/T NG radar Leonardo Kronos
The Italian SAMP/T NG will use Leonardo's AESA Kronos radar.

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