The Bundeswehr will replace its SHORAD Gepard systems for €1,3 billion

On January 18, the Bundestag Budget Committee approved a budget of €1,3 billion for the development of short-range SHORAD air defense systems, integrated into the multi-layer air defense currently being deployed.

The study was entrusted to a consortium made up of three German companies, the designer of the Skyranger 30 turret Rheinmetall, the radar specialist Hensoldt and Diehl Defense, designer of the IRIS-T SLM system with which the new system will have to cooperate.

Gepards still performing well in Ukraine

Considered obsolete just two years ago, the Gepard self-supported short-range anti-aircraft system, in service with the Bundeswehr, has demonstrated its effectiveness for close protection against drones, cruise missiles, and even aircraft. and helicopters, in Ukraine.

Gepard Ukraine
Despite its age, the German Gepard is particularly effective against drones and cruise missiles in Ukraine.

To date, 55 Gepard systems have been sent from Berlin to Ukraine, where they actively participate in anti-aircraft, anti-missile and anti-drone defense sensitive units and sites. Highly appreciated by the Ukrainians themselves, the only weakness observed in the Gepard today is the high consumption of its 30 mm ammunition with a rate of fire of up to 6 rounds per minute, rarely produced in Europe, leading to significant deficiencies. in this domain.

Much more economical and effective than traditional SHORAD missiles, such as the Stinger, the renewed interest in the Gepard in Ukraine convinced the Bundeswehr that it was necessary to complete its multi-layer anti-aircraft defense with a new system of the same type, but more modern.

The Bundeswehr wants to supplement its multi-layer air defense with new SHORAD systems

The new system, targeted by Berlin, will be responsible for anti-aircraft defense in a 3 km bubble, beyond which interception can be ensured by the IRIS-T SLM system.

The IRIS-T SLM system is today the pivot of the European Skyshield initiative launched in August 2022 by Olaf Scholz, and joined by 18 other countries since.

As such, interoperability between this new system and the German short and medium range anti-aircraft system is at the heart of the specifications required by the authorities. The presence of Diehl Defense in the consortium in charge of this program responds precisely to this need for interoperability.

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