Staged photo of a Vigilant missile being guided onto target.
Source: US Army - © Public domain
The Vigilant is an early Cold War era anti-tank missile of British origin. It was developed in the mid 1950's by Vickers Armstrongs. The Vigilant proved one of the more controllable MCLOS anti-tank missiles.
The Vigilant is a wire guided anti-tank missile. The transport container doubles as a launch tube when opened and installed at an upward angle. The separate control station is shaped somewhat as a rifle and held against the shoulder. This features the control computer, 3.2x optical sight and missile controls. The front grip is the trigger and the rear grip features the guidance joystick. While designed as a manpack system, the Vigilant proved easy to modify into a vehicle based system.
The Vigilant is a wire guided anti-tank missile using MCLOS guidance. The operator tracks both the missile and the target and steers the missile onto the target using manual controls. A 3.2x optical sight helps the gunner to track missile and target. For a MCLOS missile the Vigilant proved rather easy to use. The dead zone upon launch is about 200 meters. The control station can be used up to 60 meters away from the launch container. An optional missile selector box allows for up to six missiles to be guided in sequentially by a single operator.
The Vigilant uses a single HEAT warhead with impact fuse. Armor penetration is over 550 mm under optimal conditions. This was deemed capable of penetrating Soviet heavy and main battle tanks, such as the IS-3 and T-54. The standard British warhead had an extensible nose probe for detonation at a more favorable distance from the armor. A Swiss warhead used a ballistic cap to rotate the charge perpendicular to the armor on an oblique strike. Maximum range is 1375 meters, with a 12.5 second flight time.
The Vigilant was adopted by the United Kingdom and exported to various nations. The Vigilant was used by the United States, some European nations and nations in the Middle East with close ties to the United Kingdom. The advent of SACLOS guided anti-tank missiles in the late Cold War era made the short range and MCLOS guided Vigilant obsolete.
Copyright: Public domain
Source: Richard Allen
Copyright: GNU Attribution Share Alike license
Source: Unknown author
Copyright: Copyright lies with original owner
© WeaponSystems.net | All rights reserved.