Rafael's Python-5 Air-to-Air Missile - Missilehome



Python-5 missile in foreground and Shafrir-1 in back

Python-5 missile in foreground and Shafrir-1 in back.

MathKnight, Python5-missile001, Size by Daniel Green, CC BY-SA 3.0

Introduction

Specifications

Youtube Video

Links

Introduction

Developed by Rafael Advanced Defense Systems of Israel the Python-5 is a 5th generation air-to-air missile with exceptional characteristics. While retaining proven components of the Python-4 including the airframe, INS 1, proximity fuze, warhead and rocket motor, the Python-5 possesses cutting edge dual waveband focal plane array (FPA) technology. The missile has no less than 18 control surfaces offering up superb maneuverability. This, combined with a true 360 degree spherical engagement zone makes for a very potent weapon. Initial platforms included the F-15I Ra'am ("Thunder") and the F-16I Sufa ("Storm") but the Python-5 can be integrated onto a wide range of aircraft. It's also combat proven, at least against unmanned aerial vehicles. In August 2006 an Israeli F-16 shot down a Iranian-made Ababil-T UAV launched by the Hezbollah. In October 2012 a Iranian-made UAV that intruded into Israeli airspace was downed by a Python-5 missile fired from a F-16I. The missile is also used for SPYDER, an advanced ground-based air defense system.

1 Inertial Navigation System
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Specifications

NamePython-5
TypeShort Range Air-to-Air Missile
ManufacturerRafael Advanced Defense Systems
Cost?
In ServiceIOC 2003 1
PropulsionSolid fuel rocket motor
GuidanceElectro-optical infrared seeker
Warhead24.25 lb (11 kg) high explosive fragmentation
FuzingActive laser proximity and back-up impact fuze
Weight231.5 lb (105 kg)
Length122 in (3.1 m)
Wing Span25.2 in (640 mm)
Diameter6.3 in (160 mm)
RangeGreater than 12.4 Miles (20+ km)
SpeedMach 4 (3,069 mph / 4939 kph)

1 Initial Operating Capability 2003 according to the missile non-comparison table
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Python-4 under F-15D

Close-up of Python-4 on F-15D

KGyST, Rafael Python 4, Size by Daniel Green, CC BY-SA 3.0


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Links

Rafael Advanced Defense Systems brochure for Python-5 (pdf)

Airforce Technology

Global Security.org Python 5 page

SPYDER air defense at Deagel



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