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9M32 STRELA-2 - NATO code: SA-7 GRAIL

This is a portable anti-aircraft short-range Russian made missile of the first generation designed to defeat sub- and supersonic low flying targets.

The development of this relatively simple missile STRELA-2 (NATO code: SA-7A) began in 1959, and the basic version was put into service after 1966. Its advanced version STRELA-2M (SA-7B) with improved infra-red homing system, a more effective warhead and engine, including new detection device, has been in service since 1971. Another upgrade was made in the late 1970s, in which a new generation of homing system was incorporated. This system is more sensitive, more resistant to infra-red jamming or infra-red dummy targets, and features a significantly shorter time of response.

The missile can interface with a miniature radio-electronic direction finder which can be attached to the helmet of the gunner, who fires it from his shoulder.

From the end of the 1970s, the modified version of this missile was used to arm Mi-24 (HIND E) attack helictopters, especially for a counter-helictopter role. The missile is still considered by prominent specialists to be a highly effective weapon to defeat air targets. Its qualities include simple construction and prompt and easy use. It is also easily portable due to its low weight and small dimensions.

The STRELA-2 missile is widely used in many armed forces all over the world; under licence, it was produced in many other countries. The total number of produced missiles is estimated at 50,000 pieces.

The Russian manufacturing and exporting company Kolomna NPO (or KBM) initiated an offer in 1997 to upgrade the missile. The modernisation consisted in a two-mode infra-red homing system 9E46M with non-cooled detector. This system is part of a new generation missile system IGLA (NATO code: SA-18 GROUSE) which has a sophosticated protection against all kinds of infra-red jamming. This modernisation was not made in the missiles which are in service with the Armed Forces of the Czech Republic.

Basic Technical Data

  • Maximum effective distance range: 3,200 metres (4,200 m)
  • Maximum effective altitude range: 2,000 metres (2,300 m)
  • Minimum effective altitude range: 50 metres (30-50 m)
  • Minimum effective distance range: 800 metres
  • Maximum target speed: 220 metres per second (260 m/s)
  • Maximum missile flight speed: 385 metres per second (580 m/s)
  • Working wave length of the detector: 1.7 to 2.8 metres (1.7 to 2.8 m)
  • Field of sight of the homing system: 1.9º
  • Total weight of the whole set: 14.5 kg (15 kg)
  • Missile weight: 9.2 kg (9.85 kg)
  • Warhead weight: 1.15 kg (1.8 kg)
  • Missile length: 1.42 metres (1.44 m)
  • Diameter of the missile body: 72 mm
  • Stabilisation wings' span: 300 mm
  • Length of the launching set: 1.49 metres
  • Diameter of the launching set: 100 mm
  • Set-up time for fire: max. 6 seconds
  • Response time: max. 5 seconds
  • Self-destruction time: 14 to 17 seconds
  • Temperature scale: -38 up to +50ºC
  • Crew: 1

Note: Data in parentheses relate to STRELA-2M (SA-7B) version.

Picture Attachment

Missile projector Missile and projector