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​Diehl Reveals the Number of IRIS-T SLM Systems in Ukraine and When to Expect Next One to Come

2027
IRIS-T SLM air defense missile system in Ukraine / Still frame credit: Air Force Command of the Armed Forces of Ukraine
IRIS-T SLM air defense missile system in Ukraine / Still frame credit: Air Force Command of the Armed Forces of Ukraine

The manufacturer of the air defense system has publicly announced the quantity of medium-range fire units deployed in Ukraine

During the visit of the Vice-Chancellor of Germany Robert Habeck to Ukraine, the German delegation also included Helmut Rauch, CEO of Diehl Defence. The company has been producing and supplying to Ukraine surface-based launchers for IRIS-T anti-aircraft missiles, called the IRIS-T SLM systems.

"Three of our [IRIS-T SLM] systems are already in Ukraine and more will be delivered this year. The next one in just a few weeks," Helmut Rauch said in an interview to Bild. Also, the journalists mentioned each system costs about EUR 140 million.

Read more: ​Germany "Immediately" Sends Patriot to Ukraine – Pistorius
IRIS-T SLM air defense missile system in Ukraine / Defense Express / Diehl Reveals the Number of IRIS-T SLM Systems in Ukraine and When to Expect Next One to Come
IRIS-T SLM air defense missile system in Ukraine / Still frame credit: Air Force Command of the Armed Forces of Ukraine

As the SLM in the name suggests, it's a Surface-Launched Medium-range system capable of covering airspace within a 40-km engagement range. The systems have been arriving in Ukraine since around fall 2022 in secrecy, the first time one of those was shown to the public was in January 2023, making headlines.

Overall, the German government committed 12 medium-ranged IRIS-T SLM and on top of that, 12 short-ranged IRIS-T SLS systems to the Armed Forces of Ukraine, with new supplies coming as soon as they are produced by Diehl. Besides the launchers, the German manufacturer is also ramping up the production of IRIS-T missiles to keep the systems working. As of 2024, the company makes 450 to 500 missiles yearly.

Defense Express reminds the last time IRIS-T was on the media radar was in November 2023 when German Minister of Defense Boris Pistorius announced the provision of additional systems, then in January 2024 he also promised to deliver more of them within 2024.

IRIS-T missiles in the containers on an SLM launcher, Ukraine, May 2023 / Defense Express / Diehl Reveals the Number of IRIS-T SLM Systems in Ukraine and When to Expect Next One to Come
IRIS-T missiles in the containers on an SLM launcher, Ukraine, May 2023 / Still frame credit: Air Force Command of the Armed Forces of Ukraine
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