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Seacat shipborne surface-to-air missile

Date: 1966
Overall: 1500 x 660 x 660 mm
Medium: Metal
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Transferred from the Department of Defence
Object Name: Missile
Object No: 00029296
Place Manufactured:Bendigo

User Terms

    This short-range subsonic guided missile was used on surface ships for low level air attack defence. The British Royal Navy developed the Seacat missile in the late 1950s to protect surface ships from the increasing threat of jet aircraft. It was fitted to Royal Australian Navy (RAN) River class destroyer escorts and used until the 1990s.
    SignificanceThe Seacat brought the Royal Australian Navy (RAN) into the missile age and was fitted to all Type 12 frigates. It was supplied to a total of 15 navies including the RAN because of its reliability, compactness and low cost.
    HistoryThe Seacat (GWS20) shipborne surface-to-air missile was designed by Short Brothers Limited and manufactured by the Commonwealth Government Ordnance Factory, Bendigo Australia for the Royal Australian Navy (RAN).

    This missile system was a short-range subsonic guided missile used on ships for low level air attack defence. It was fitted to the RAN River class destroyer escorts.

    A Seacat missile aimer acquired the target using binoculars and then guided the missile by means of signals transmitted over a radio link and the use of a joystick. Later versions of the guided weapon system (GWS 21, 22, 24) added radar homing, TV guidance and gave a limited capability against surface targets. The Seacat missile was launched from a quadruple trainable launcher; reloading was manual. It had a range of 5,000 metres, altitude of 915 metres and propulsion was dual thrust solid fuel.

    The Seacat was designed to replace the rapid-firing 40-mm Bofors and Oerlikon guns.

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