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£35 million contract sustains RAF's precision weapon

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) is investing £35 million to sustain the RAF's stockpile of Brimstone missiles.

A computer-generated image of Brimstone missiles fitted to a Royal Air Force Tornado GR4 aircraft [Picture: MBDA Missile Systems]
A computer-generated image of Brimstone missiles fitted to a Tornado

A contract with British defence firm MBDA will guarantee the supply of the weapons for the next 5 years.

The air-to-ground missiles provide unrivalled capability for pilots, who are able to engage moving and static targets during both the day and the night.

With a small warhead and precision guidance, using Brimstone significantly reduces the risk of collateral damage.

Manufactured and assembled by MBDA in the UK, the contract will secure 20 specialist jobs at their facilities in Henlow, Bedfordshire, and Lostock, Bolton.

Carried by RAF Tornados, Brimstone has been used extensively on operations in Afghanistan.

Philip Dunne (right) with a Brimstone missile
Philip Dunne (right), Minister for Defence Equipment, Support and Technology, with a Brimstone missile at the Dubai Air Show [Picture: Billypix]

Announcing the contract at the Dubai Air Show, Minister for Defence Equipment, Support and Technology Philip Dunne said:

Brimstone missiles provide unrivalled precision capability and are key to protecting our forces in Afghanistan.

Designed and manufactured in the UK, these weapons have continued to prove their effectiveness on operations.

This contract will ensure our Brimstone missiles are fully primed for use with the RAF for years to come.

Air Commodore Mike Quigley, Head of Engineering in the Weapons Operating Centre of MOD’s Defence Equipment and Support organisation, said:

Brimstone plays a vital part in our modern and sophisticated arsenal of precision strike weapons and securing this contract means a consistent delivery of weapons to the RAF as and when they are needed.

The missile is currently deployed on the Tornado GR4, and the intention is to integrate Brimstone onto the RAF’s Typhoon aircraft and the future Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter jets.

Published 18 November 2013