The Precision Strike team successfully fired two Spike NLOS all up rounds (AURs) from the Apache Echo Model V6 on January 26, 2023, at Yuma Proving Ground in Arizona. The successful live fire event verifies the Spike NLOS Long Range Precision Munitions Directed Requirement (LRPM DR) system’s integration onto the Apache platform and allows it to enter qualification testing. The demonstration featured two Spike NLOS AURs firing from an Apache platform at a stationary target in two separate scenarios. The Spike NLOS system will begin testing to qualify the design for airworthiness release (AWR). Once AWR is awarded, the system will be fielded on the U.S. Army’s Apache Echo Model V6 platforms by September 2024.
“The successful integration of Spike NLOS on the Apache platform demonstrates Lockheed Martin’s continued commitment to 21st century security solutions that help our customers complete their missions. The system’s expansion onto additional platforms, along with its mission-focused defense capabilities, ensures it will help the U.S. Army stay ahead of ready in an ever-evolving threat environment,” says Tom Bargnesi, program management senior manager of the Precision Strike team at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control.
Spike is an Israeli fire-and-forget anti-tank guided missile and anti-personnel missile with a tandem-charge HEAT warhead, currently in its fourth generation. It was developed following lessons learned in the Yom Kippur War, which showed a need for a high-precision guided tactical ground-to-ground battlefield missile. Spike was developed and designed by the Israeli company Rafael Advanced Defense Systems. It is available in man-portable, vehicle-launched, and helicopter-launched variants. “Non-Line Of Sight” is an ultra-long-range version of the weapon (Tamuz), with a claimed maximum range of 25 kilometers (16 miles). It can be launched from the ground or in helicopters.
The SPIKE NLOS missile supports the Army’s third modernization priority, Future Vertical Lift’s signature effort the Future Attack Reconnaissance Aircraft (FARA). The FARA ecosystem includes the Long Range Precision Munition and Air Launched Effects. During the experiment the AH-64E was the surrogate FARA, SPIKE NLOS was the surrogate LRPM, and Area-I’s ALTIUS 600 UAS was the surrogate ALE. Showcasing the ecosystem allowed Army aviation to demonstrate the reach, range, and lethality of both the Apache with SPIKE and the future FARA will LRPM. Today, the SPIKE NLOS missile could provide an interim solution that exceeds the range of currently fielded systems, if the Army decides to purchase the missile.