29 November 2023 – Senior Minister of State for Defence, Mr Heng Chee How officiated at a ceremony to mark the attainment of Full Operational Capability (FOC) status by the Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF)’s Aster 30 Medium-range Surface-to-Air Missile (MSAM) system. The ceremony was held this morning at 163 Squadron at the RSAF’s Air Defence and Operations Command, at Lim Chu Kang Camp II. Mr Heng received a brief on the capabilities of the Aster 30 missile system, unveiled a commemorative plaque for the system’s attainment of FOC, and thanked the personnel from the RSAF, the Defence Technology Community (DTC) and the Defence Science and Technology Agency (DSTA) for their dedication and commitment to Singapore’s defence.
The Aster 30 missile system is an all-weather, next generation MSAM and is an integral part of the wider Island Air Defence (IAD) system that protects Singapore 24/7. The Aster 30 missile system is tightly integrated with other advanced sensors, shooters, and command and control systems in the IAD system to provide a multi-layered, networked, and intelligent air defence for Singapore round the clock. In addition, the missile system can draw also capable of engaging multiple air threats simultaneously at a longer range and with greater precision.
Speaking at the event, Mr Heng expressed confidence in the RSAF’s operational on information from other sensors in the IAD network to counter air threats effectively and timely, and is
readiness and capability to safeguard Singapore’s skies against a wide spectrum of air threats. He said, “As Singapore lacks geographical depth, the use of the Aster 30 missile system is particularly apt. The system is able to intercept, at a further distance than the I-HAWK, a wider range of modern air threats, and this includes fighter aircraft, helicopters, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles, and even precision-guided munitions… The RSAF is charged with the critical mission of defending our skies. It did so valiantly every moment of these past 55 years. I have every confidence that it will live up to the trust that Singapore and Singaporeans repose in it, as it builds and keeps strong for the challenging times ahead.”
To recognise the strong teamwork and integration between the RSAF and the Defence Technology Community to fully operationalise the Aster 30 missile system and integrate it into the IAD system, Mr Heng also said, “Bringing a complex and technologically advanced system to full working order calls for tight and effective ops-tech teamwork. It is therefore also important to recognise the valuable contributions from the 9 Air Engineering and Logistics Group, the Defence Technology Community and the Defence Science and Technology Agency for their superb partnership with the 163 Squadron in this joint endeavour.”
Mr Heng was accompanied by Permanent Secretary (Defence) Mr Chan Heng Kee, Chief of Defence Force Vice Admiral Aaron Beng, Permanent Secretary (Defence Development) Mr Melvyn Ong, Chief of Air Force Major-General Kelvin Khong, Commander Air Defence and Operations Command Brigadier-General Koh Ee Wen, and other senior officers from the RSAF.
Source: Singapore Ministry of Defense
Photo courtesy Singapore MoD