|Rafael's Spike missile family at DefExpo 2014|
Israel's Rafael has been trying to sell its Spike anti-tank missiles to India for quite a while now, but has been frustrated by bureaucratic indecisiveness, easily justified by empty coffers and some strong lobbying by the Americans pitching their Javelin ATGM as an alternative.
Spike MR at the bottom of the picture above is the man portable version of the anti-tank missile. The extended range Spike ER seen in the middle is being pitched for use by the Army's Dhruv WSI (Rudra) helicopters. Spike NLOS at the top is currently FIY only, since there is no Indian RFI for it.
"I am confident that when requirements for longer-range precision attack weapons are laid out, the SPIKE NLOS that we are also displaying here at DEFEXPO will come to the limelight," says Oron Oriol, RAFAEL’s VP Marketing & Business Development.
Spike NLOS has a range of 25-km and is equipped with a EO seeker that uses image comparison to seek out its target, the only missile of its type using such a seeker.
The use of image comparison in a stand off, non line of sight weapon eliminates the need to illuminate the target with a laser, or obtain geolocation with pinpoint accuracy. Typically the electro-optical 'sensor to shooter' cycle involves the use of a electro-optical reconnaissance pods like the RECCELITE system for manned aircraft, or the RECCEU system for unmanned aerial systems. Imagery can be also obtained from the widely used Litening pods.