Introduced in 1972, the light anti-tank missile fired from vehicles or helicopters, and originally developed by Euromissile, the HOT (French: HOT (haut subsonique optiquement téléguidé tiré d’un tube or “high-subsonic, optically teleguided, tube-fired”) is now being built by MBDA, which absorbed Euromissile. It is of the same vintage of guided missile as the BGM-71 TOW; both types have gone through multiple upgrades.
Its original manufacturer, Euromissile, a joint project of Aerospatiale-Matra of France and DaimlerChrysler Aerospace of Germany, is now a subsidiary of the EADS company. The missile is now a product of MBDA, which combines the missile system activities of Aerospatiale-Matra, Matra BAE Dynamics and Alenia Marconi Systems and is jointly owned by EADS, BaE Systems and Finmeccanica.
It is launched from a tube, and, as it flies, it unreels thin wires that keep it connected to the operator's console.
Missile and variants
Like the TOW, it is tube-launched and wire-guided, but has a larger warhead.
HOT is a tube-launched, wire-guided missile with Semi-Automatic Command-to-Line-Of-Sight (SACLOS) guidance. An infrared sensor measures the angular deviation between the missile and the line-of-sight; it operates at dual 1 and 10 micron wavelengths, eliminating infrared jamming. The thermal imager is used in parallel for missile guidance.
The standard anti-tank warhead for HOT 3 is a 6.5kg tandem charge warhead, the first charge of which will detonate reactive armor. After a delay, the main charge then explodes. Alternatively, the HOT-2MP, a more general-purpose round, sends propels steel sphere with its shaped charge, and also has an incendiary effect at the front of the hollow charge.
Anti-Tank modular system
HOT sensors were made more general-purpose, not limited to fire control but also for surveillance, in 1997. Even in the fire control role, the HOT ATM (Anti-Tank Modular) system, can control other weapons, such as tank guns or coaxial machine guns. The ATM consists of three modules: a stabilized, elevated, sensor platform; control system inside the vehicle; and turret with the HOT missiles and cannon or machine gun.
Its "eyes" are in a retractable mast-mounted sensor Sensors include a Thales (formerly Thomson-CSF) Optrosys Castor infrared camera, day TV camera, CILAS laser rangefinder and 1-micron infrared localizer. The system performs target detection up to 7,000m, identification and aiming.
HOT comes in turret-mounted versions for vehicles, as well as helicopter mounts. HOT 3 arms the French and German Armies' Tiger helicopters, which began deliveries in 2005.
The HOT ATM turret is equipped with either two or four HOT 3 missiles and can also be armed with 30mm or 20mm cannon or 12.7mm machine gun.
For helicopter applications, it will be replaced by the longer-ranged TRIGAT LR. The missile is also known as PARS-3 (Panzerabwehr Rakensystem 3) in Germany and AC 3G (AntiChar de 3e Generation) in France. The missile is to be integrated on the Eurocopter Tiger helicopter developed for the French and German armies, by a joint manufacturing program of France, Germany and the UK. The UK chose not to procure it. . Like the FGM-148 Javelin, the TRIGAT has pop-up and direct-fire modes.
TRIGAT is a European programme involving France, Germany and the United Kingdom.