BRUSSELS — NATO says it has successfully tested an Italian radar system as part of its efforts to build a ballistic missile defense architecture, according to a press release issued Oct. 10.
Following a large-scale multinational test from Sept. 25-29, called the “Ensemble Test 2” and conducted by the NATO Communications and Information Agency, the agency “confirmed the compatibility of a new Italian sensor with the Alliance’s ballistic missile defense architecture”.
This was the second in a regular series of test events that are conducted among nations that contribute their missile defense resources to the collective defense of the alliance’s European populations and territory. The purpose of the “ensemble” tests is to reduce technical risks as various sensors, weapon and communication systems are incrementally added to the defense architecture.
“Special mention goes to the successful test and integration of the Italian TPS-77 radar, which was a new asset being tested,” said Program Director Alessandro Pera. “The test showed that the Italian TPS-77, as a BMD sensor, is able to contribute to NATO’s ballistic missile defense situational awareness.”
NATO added that a follow-up Ensemble Test 3 will be conducted in May-June 2013.
In all, 12 laboratories from five nations across two continents took part in the test. A total of 16 national and NATO systems were integrated and tested.
The participating systems included:
The Patriot missile defense systems of The Netherlands, Germany and the United States.
The ADCF Frigate of the Royal Netherlands Navy.
The surface-to-air, medium-range missile defense systems of France and Italy.
The SAM Operations Center from Germany.
The TPS-77 and the Horizon Principal Anti Air Missile System of Italy.
The Aegis ballistic missile defense system, the command and control, battle management, and communications system, the Army-Navy transportable radar surveillance system and the shared early warning system of the United States.
The air command-and-control system, the air command-and-control information services CRC system interface, and the interim command and control system of NATO.