(2) what improvements have been made to the Sea Skua system since it entered service with the Royal Navy; and what the cost of each has been;
(3) what the planned out-of-service date of the Sea Skua system is;
(4) whether his Department plans to make further improvements to the Sea Skua system.
The Sea Skua Missile entered service with the Royal Navy in 1982.
In order to extend the operational life of the missiles, some component change and re-qualification programmes have been carried out. These included replacing the energetic material used in both rocket motors, at a cost of about £11 million; and refurbishment of the missile’s motor ignition delay unit, at a cost of £0.9 million. In addition, Sea Skua was subject to a life extension programme at a cost of £0.8 million. There are currently no plans to make further improvements to the Sea Skua system.
On present planning assumptions, which may change, Sea Skua will be withdrawn from service by approximately the middle of the next decade.