Rafael has completed the development of its new long-range, infrared-guided Python 5 air-to-air missile. The weapon is in production, say sources in Israel, although Rafael declines to comment.

The Python 5 is believed to have an improved seeker, motor and better immunity to countermeasures than its predecessor the Python 4. Israeli sources say the missile has immunity against the full spectrum of countermeasures.

The weapons company has developed the Python 5 in close co-operation with the Israeli air force, which has expressed a need for a new missile.

The Python5 has a range of more than 20km (11nm), and can cruise at Mach 4 with no loss of manoeuvrability, say the sources. The missile is understood to be equipped with a "super kill" warhead weighing more than 11kg (24lb).

Rafael is offering the new missile alongside its radar-guided Derby.

Source: Flight International