For the first time in Britain, the Australian-designed guided anti-tank Malkara missile was demonstrated by the Royal Armoured Corps at Lulworth camp, Dorset, June 23.
Military observers watch Centurion tanks firing on the move.
Conqueror tanks firing.
Malkara missile being prepared and fired.
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Background: For the first time in Britain, the Australian-designed guided anti-tank Malkara missile was demonstrated by the Royal Armoured Corps at Lulworth camp, Dorset, June 23.
The first missile hit a tank hulk amidships at a range of 1,300 yards, and the second a moving canvas target at a range of 1,800. Small and stubby, the 5ft 200-lb missile flies relatively slowly a few feet above the ground, carrying small flares on its wings to enable its controller to follow its flight and pass the necessary signals along a communicating wire to steer it on to the target.
Mounted on its proper operational vehicle - to be developed within the next year or so - the Malkara will be the missile equivalent to a self-propelled gun rather than tank. Its range is secret but, as the power and accuracy of missiles do not deteriorate at longer ranges as do those of tank guns, it is though that the Malkara will be able to hit enemy tanks before its vehicle comes into the range of their guns.
Part of the Army's re-equipment programme for greater mobility and striking power with less manpower, the Malkara has two obvious roles to play: as a replacement for the Conqueror heavy-gun tank in Europe, and as an air-portable weapon for overseas, where it could hold off enemy armour until tanks can be brought in by sea.