ILA: Diehl touts GILA rocket for Tiger

Berlin
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Guided weapons producer Diehl Defence is promoting its guided intelligent light armament (GILA) at the ILA Berlin air show, with the design being a proposed addition for the German army's Airbus Helicopters Tiger combat rotorcraft.

The lightweight weapon would give the Tiger a low-cost, semi-active laser-equipped rocket for use in scenarios such as urban operations, where high precision and low collateral damage characteristics are essential.

The 70mm-diameter GILA round is derived from the guided advanced tactical rocket developed by Israel's Elbit Systems, which has a claimed effective range of 8km (4.3nm).

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Diehl says its proposed addition for Germany's Tigers offers a key benefit over traditional, unguided rockets, as it features a lock-on-before-launch mode and is "designed to provide mission abort capability".

The German company says that under the terms of its cooperation agreement with Elbit, "if GILA were procured, Diehl Defence would receive extensive work share, such as on the guidance-and-control unit, as well as actuation system production, guided-rocket final assembly, simulation software, helicopter integration and logistics."

Noting that the weapon can be integrated with the Tiger's existing 70mm rocket launchers without modification, Diehl says: "its qualification and integration could begin immediately".

The German army has used its ASGARD-standard Tigers in Afghanistan since early last year. The service's current active fleet stands at 26 examples, says Flightglobal's Ascend Online database. Berlin is due to eventually receive 57, following a contract renegotiation agreed early last year, which reduced its programme commitment from 80.