|Manufacturer:||Kentron (division of Denel (Pty) Ltd)|
The private venture Mokopa (Black Mamba) fire-and-forget modular missile family is the result of protracted technology demonstration contracts from the South African weapons procurement authority Armscor. It is designed to initially complement, then replace, the current Kentron ZT-3 laser-guided missile family.
The first application of the Mokopa missile is expected to be the CSH-2 Rooivalk attack helicopter, 12 of which have been ordered by the South African Air Force.
In addition to the nose-mounted cannon, the CSH-2 Rooivalk attack helicopter is expected to carry two pods of four Mokopa missiles either side plus air-to-air missiles if required.
It is probable that to reduce development and procurement costs, the MMW and IIR seekers would be purchased off-the-shelf from abroad.
By early 1998, all key subsystems of the Mokopa had been tested and first-release tests from a helicopter were completed.
The Mokopa has a diameter of 0.178 m, length of 1.8 m, launch weight of 52 kg, flight speed of 530 m/s and a maximum range of 8,500 m. It utilizes a variety of seekers and warheads and is designed for launch from helicopters, vehicles and marine craft. The control surfaces are at the front with fixed fins at the rear, a digital autopilot is fitted.
The primary role will be anti-armour for which a tandem High Explosive Anti-Tank (HEAT) warhead able to penetrate over 1,350 mm of rolled homogenous steel armour, protected by Explosive Reactive Armour (ERA) has been developed. For non-armour targets an HE-fragmentation warhead is being developed.
The fitted guidance seeker can be either a laser designation homing type; a MilliMetric Wave (MMW) type; or an Imaging Infra-Red (IIR) type. The missile will be capable of lock-on both before and after launch. The mix of warhead and seeker types allows the user to meet different operational requirements with the same launch platform. The first version to enter service is expected to be the semi-active laser homing version.
Kentron have emphasised the following six key features of the Mokopa anti-tank missile:
(1) modular design
(2) growth path to fire-and-forget guidance
(3) cost-effective design
(4) advanced warhead capability
(5) multipurpose application
(6) simple interface to various launch platforms.
Private development. Carriage clearance and release trials on the Denel Atlas Aviation Rooivalk attack helicopter were carried out in September 1995.