Guardians of the Skies

29 Nov 2023

The Aster 30 Medium-range Surface-to-Air Missile (MSAM) System was declared fully operational on 29 November 2023.

The ceremony, officiated by Senior Minister of State for Defence, Mr Heng Chee How at Lim Chu Kang Camp II, marked another milestone in the partnership between DSTA and the Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF).


The Aster 30 Missile System

The RSAF’s Island Air Defence system is akin to a well-designed jigsaw puzzle where all the systems – including advanced sensors, weapon systems, command and control elements – would come together precisely to deliver a powerful network-centric air defence capability. The Aster 30 Missile System plays a vital role in the IAD system, acting as a crucial piece in the puzzle. It enables the interception and precise neutralisation of a wide range of air threats which includes fighter aircraft, helicopters, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles, and Precision-Guided Munitions.


Speaking at the ceremony, Mr Heng Chee How stressed the need to bring in advanced systems like the Aster 30 Missile System to boost our air defence. “As the range of threats continue to evolve, it is important that the RSAF induct more capable systems to match,” said Mr Heng.


Senior Minister of State for Defence Mr Heng Chee How (fourth from left) unveiled the plaque to mark the Full Operational Capability of the Aster 30 Missile System.

DSTA spearheaded the design of the IAD system architecture, acquired and integrated sensors and weapons, including the Aster 30 system, into the IAD network. The team also developed the Combat Network and Smart CMS to connect various air defence capabilities based on RSAF's operational needs.

The Ops-Tech partnership forged between DSTA and the RSAF played a pivotal role in the project, by harmonising the operational requirements and technological possibilities. This partnership allowed DSTA engineers to gain deep insights into the RSAF’s air defence operations and the operators to understand the tech possibilities and implications from an engineering perspective. This helped the Ops-Tech team to integrate best-of-breed systems to transform the RSAF’s air defence capabilities.

In addition, the success is also attributed to the strong teamwork and collective expertise from the multi-disciplinary team in DSTA. The integrated team worked together to implement innovative solutions to overcome the various challenges, delivering the Aster 30 Missile System as an important layer of defence and enabling the RSAF to deal with a wide spectrum of air threats.


Senior Engineer (Advanced Systems) Joel Toh (left) is part of the multidisciplinary team behind the Aster 30 Missile System.

Reflecting on the journey, Senior Engineer (Advanced Systems) Joel Toh shared: “After years of hard work with a diverse and tight-knit team from both DSTA and RSAF, I feel a deep sense of accomplishment being able to witness the full operationalisation of the system.”

He added: “I believe what spurred us on in the project was a shared vision to keeping Singapore safe. Tackling complex problems and finding creative solutions helped us push the boundaries of what we could achieve.”


The DSTA team at the ceremony.