Sponsored by Blighter Surveillance Systems
21 Dec 21. Nir-Or completes first models supply of its advanced video system for the IDF’s Namer APC. The company now moves forward to the serial supply of the systems to the IDF. Nir-Or, a subsidiary of IMCO Industries Ltd. (Tel Aviv Stock Exchange TASE: IMCO), announces that it has completed the first models’ supply of its advanced video system for the IDF’s Namer armored personnel carriers (APC). The company now moves to the next step, which includes the serial supply of the systems to the IDF. Later on, Nir-Or’s video systems will also be supplied for the IDF’s Eitan APC. Nir-Or designs, develops, manufactures, and integrates innovative electronic systems and products for a vast range of military applications that maximize force lethality and survivability at land, air, and sea. Its advanced video system includes a Video PBX with several displays. This is a new generation of Nir-Or’s combat-proven video system, and the IDF is the first customer to receive it.
Nir-Or’s CEO, BG. (Ret.) Roy Riftin: “Nir-Or has been a trusted supplier of the IDF for many years, and we are honored to announce that we have completed the delivery of the first models of our advanced video system to the IDF’s new Namer APC. Nir-Or’s line of solutions includes Multi-dimensional Situational Awareness, AI-powered, Video systems for armored vehichels (APCs / AFVs) and designated military platforms that maximize force lethality and survivability.”
17 Dec 21. US Navy trials latest version of its counter-UAS laser weapon. The US amphibious transport dock ship USS Portland (LPD 27) has conducted a high-energy laser weapon system demonstration on December 14 while sailing in the Gulf of Aden. According to a US Navy press release: “During the demonstration, the Solid State Laser – Technology Maturation Laser Weapons System Demonstrator (LWSD) Mark 2 MOD 0 aboard Portland successfully engaged a static surface training target. Portland previously tested the LWSD in May 2020 when it successfully disabled a small unmanned aerial system while operating in the Pacific Ocean. The Office of Naval Research selected Portland to host the laser weapon technology in 2018. The LWSD is considered a next-generation follow-on to the Laser Weapon System (LaWS) that afloat forward staging base USS Ponce (AFSB(I)-15) tested for three years while operating in the Middle East.” For more information https://www.navy.mil/Press-Office/News-Stories/Article/2873919/uss-portland-tests-high-energy-laser-weapon-system-in-gulf-of-aden/#:~:text=USS%20Portland%20Tests,the%20Indian%20Ocean. (Source: www.unmannedairspace.info)
15 Dec 21. “Russian armed forces to receive upgraded Pantsyr-SIM counter-UAS systems” – TASS. Russia’s TASS new agency has reported the Pantsyr-S1M counter UAS/air defence system has received new hypersonic surface-to-air missiles that has boosted its striking range from 20 km to 30 km, its operational altitude from 15 km to 18 km and its destruction area threefold. According to the news agency: “The upgraded Pantsyr-S1M surface-to-air missile/gun system is capable of fighting all types of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), including strike drones, Industrial Director of the Armaments Cluster at the state tech corporation Rostec Bekkhan Ozdoyev….The upgrade has substantially boosted the Pantsyr’s capabilities for fighting all types of drones. In particular, the system is capable of effectively detecting and destroying all types of strike drones that are in operational service,” he said.
Deputy CEO of the High Precision Weapons Company (part of Rostec) Sergei Mikhailov said: “The Pantsyr-S1M can be used as the basis for building an effective modular air defense network capable of shielding any military units from small-size and strike drones, precision weapons and, of course, military aviation – aircraft and helicopters. The system fully complies with the present-day A2/AD [anti-access/area denial] principles [an air defense system used to prevent an enemy from penetrating into vital areas],”
According to the TASS report, along with new missiles, the system can also fire missiles of the Pantsyr-S1 launcher. The upgrade of the Pantsyr-S1M has also improved its stealth, jamming resistance and the rate of fire. Russia’s state arms exporter Rosoboronexport signed the first contract on the delivery of Pantsyr-S1M anti-aircraft missile/gun systems at the Army 2021 international arms show on August 25.
“The upgraded Pantsyr-S1M surface-to-air missile/gun system will be a major element of Russia’s multi-layered counter-drone system, Deputy CEO of the High Precision Weapons Company Sergei Mikhailov said at the EDEX international defense show running on November 29 – December 2 in Cairo.”
“Countering drones is a major task for present-day air defense weapons. Currently, the Russian industry produces two types of counter-drone capabilities: ‘soft-kill’ to suppress drones by electronic countermeasures and ‘hard-kill’ to physically destroy UAVs. The network integrating both technologies was unveiled at the IDEX 2021 [international arms] show and the Pantsyr-S1M will be its major component, in particular, within a group of systems for physically eliminating drones,” Mikhailov said. “The munitions that are used make it possible to fully meet the cost/efficiency ratio in striking targets. We can confidently say that the Pantsyr-S1M is the world’s least expensive counter-drone system,” he added. For more information: https://tass.com/defense/1368227(Source: www.unmannedairspace.info)
20 Dec 21. USMC issues request for information for C-UAS interceptors. The United States Marine Corps (USMC) Program Executive Officer Land Systems (PEO LS), Program Manager (PM) for Ground Based Air Defense (GBAD) has issued a Request for Information (RFI) to solicit potential solutions from industry on Counter-Unmanned Aircraft System (C-UAS) interceptors to defeat Groups 1, 2, and 3 Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) as defined in Annex C of the Department of Defense Counter Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems Strategy (https://media.defense.gov/2021/Jan/07/2002561080/-1/-1/0/DEPARTMENT-OF-DEFENSECOUNTER-SMALL-UNMANNED-AIRCRAFT-SYSTEMS-STRATEGY.pdf).
According to the RFI text: “The potential solutions should provide increased lethality and range of defeat for the GBAD Future Weapons Systems (FWS) Increment 1 (Inc 1) Marine Air Defense Integrated System (MADIS) program of record, hereafter referred to as MADIS. The requirement may include the following: integration, testing, production, and optional maintenance support. This RFI constitutes market research in accordance with FAR Part 10 and is not an RFP. USMC is issuing this RFI, in support of PEO LS, to determine what vendor(s) have the capability to provide the support described herein.”
Tender notice: M67854-22-I-0014
Responsible organisation: US Department of Defense
Deadline: January 20, 2022 05:00 pm EST(Source: www.unmannedairspace.info)
20 Dec 21. US Department of Homeland Security extends deadline for C-UAS market survey. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Science & Technology Directorate (DHS S&T) has published an extended deadline to its request for information to the 2018/2019 Counter-Unmanned Aircraft System (C-UAS) Market Survey update.. The original Response Date was December 20, 2021 05:00 pm EST; the new deadline is January 20, 2022 05:00 pm EST. According to a request for information (RFI) text posted on the Sam.gov website: “As with the original survey, DHS S&T is working through Sandia National Laboratories to solicit and collect information from C-UAS component and system manufacturers on their current or developing C-UAS technologies. This information will provide greater awareness of current status and capabilities across industry and will inform efforts to match suitable capabilities against needs across government for acquisition and deployment decisions. This RFI consists of a questionnaire designed to help DHS S&T collect technical product information in a structured format which will aid in the analysis process. This questionnaire exists in a web-based format which steps the respondent through a series of conditional questions, with the intent of gathering the most valuable information in a format which is time-efficient for both the respondent and for DHS S&T analysis. All C-UAS companies are encouraged to respond promptly by answering the questions at the following website: https://www.sandia.gov/2021-cuas-market-survey/ (Source: www.unmannedairspace.info)
14 Dec 21. Slovakia relies on D-Fend’s EnforceAir drone mitigation solution during recent Papal visit. Counter drone company D-Fend reports working with the Slovakian Interior Ministry in September 2021 during a visit of the Pope. D-Fend equipment was employed to protect the pope, his retinue and attendees from the threat of rogue drones throughout multiple events in Slovakia, culminating with the open-air Mass in Šaštín, home to the National Marian Shrine. Details have been published for the first time in an exclusive article published by The Jerusalem Post.
According to the newspaper, the EnforceAir product developed by D-Fend was deployed with its ground-level tactical kit to provide 360-degree coverage. EnforceAir technology recognizes and permits authorized drones to operate in the airspace, focusing its defensive capabilities on mitigating rogue drones.
A previously unseen do-it-yourself drone was detected by EnforceAir during the mass. Initially, when the police decided to mitigate the potential threat, they considered using a jammer-based solution, said the newspaper. However, they quickly changed approaches, realizing that such jammers could potentially disrupt communications systems operating in the area. They were also concerned about halting media transmissions surrounding the pope’s address during the mass, as well as disrupting security base stations, which could create a separate security risk.
“EnforceAir fended off the rogue drone, sending it back to its original takeoff position, far away from the large crowd,” D-Fend told the newspaper.
“Protecting such a high-profile event is of the utmost importance, so we wanted to utilize a counter-drone technology that is best suited for crowded events and sensitive situations,” said a representative of the office responsible for the pope’s protection during his stay in Slovakia. “EnforceAir’s innovative solution took control of the rogue drone that threatened the potential safety of the pope, the crowd and the VIPs in attendance, quickly and easily.”
According to D-Fend, “Drones are posing an increasing threat to national security around the world – to critical infrastructure, civilians, and now to leaders.”
For more information visit: www.jpost.comwww.d-fendsolutions.com (Source: www.unmannedairspace.info)
17 Dec 21. Elbit Systems UK provides rapid delivery of first tranche of XACT Night Vision Goggles to the British Army. Elbit Systems UK has delivered the first tranche of its XACT Night Vision Goggles to the British Army as part of a contract awarded by the UK Ministry of Defence (MOD) to the company in June of this year. Following First Article Inspections conducted by MOD Defence Equipment and Security (DE&S), this initial consignment of XACT systems was manufactured at Elbit Systems UK’s subsidiary Instro Precision Ltd’s (Instro) facility in Kent. The systems have been delivered from Instro to the British Army for operational use with a lead time of only a few months, demonstrating the company’s agility and its ability to respond swiftly to the needs of the UK Armed Forces. Representatives from DE&S recently visited Instro’s site to oversee the process and formally provide approval for the initial delivery of the systems to the British Army. Prior to delivery of this first tranche of systems, a number of XACT nv33 systems were supplied to the 1st Division at Imphal Barracks in York, in order to provide instruction on the capabilities of the Night Vision Goggles to the Divisional Training Advisory Team (DTAT). The lightweight micro binocular XACT nv33 Night Vision Goggles have been supplied in a helmet-mounted configuration, with size, weight and improved capabilities that have been well-received by the Army. The systems will allow troops to maximise their mission efficiency in dark conditions and enable them to operate at a tactical level in both dismounted and mounted roles. Products from the XACT family are already in operational use with a number of NATO countries including Germany, the Netherlands and Israel.
16 Dec 21. USAF tests out counter-drone technology. The easily transportable device uses high-power microwaves to disrupt drone swarms. In the hand of adversaries, swarms of unmanned aerial systems can conduct surveillance of military bases, destroy infrastructure and even attack warfighters. To counteract this threat and provide additional layers of base defense, the Air Force Research Lab has created the Tactical High-power Operational Responder.
Developed by AFRL’s Directed Energy Directorate at Kirtland Air Force Base, the counter-swarm electromagnetic weapon provides a “non-kinetic” defense to fend off multiple targets. Drone swarms have posed a challenge to both high-cost weapons systems and small arms, which have limited range and effectiveness against multiple small targets.
Once a target is identified, THOR uses high-power microwaves to cause a counter electronic effect, discharging in an instant with immediate impact. Using a focused beam of energy, THOR can disable multiple drones in a large target area at the same time, giving air bases a light-speed, low cost-per-shot solution to fend off enemy drone forces.
The system was designed and built in record time and is currently concluding an operational assessment, according to THOR program manager Adrian Lucero. The prototype has already been put through a number of challenges.
“Our recent field assessment had an almost 90% effectiveness by operators in the field, who had just been trained on the system,” THOR Deputy Program Manager Capt. James Wymer told AFRL News. “THOR is an early demonstrator and we are confident we can approach a 100% kill rate by refining the hardware and improving operator training.”
Personnel can be easily trained on the system, which stows in a 20-foot transport container and can be set up within three hours.
Leaders at the Department of Defense and AFRL have worked to bring high-power electromagnetic technologies such as THOR to base defense for some time. Recently, the technology was named “Best of What’s New” in the security category by Popular Science.
“Our scientists, Airmen, and contractors worked nights and weekends to make this all possible, and they’re still doing it every day,” AFRL’s High Power Electromagnetics Division lead Jeffry Heggemeier said. “The real reward will be when we see a THOR defending our service members on the front lines.” (Source: Defense Systems)
17 Dec 21. KAI awarded contract to deliver four Baekdu-II ISR aircraft systems to the RoKAF. Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) has been awarded a KRW800bn (USD675m) contract to develop and manufacture four intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) aircraft systems for the Republic of Korea Air Force (RoKAF) under the second phase of the Baekdu project. The contract, awarded by South Korea’s Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) and announced by KAI on 17 December, is due to be completed by the end of 2026 and will develop the new ISR system that will replace the four Hawker 800SIG Peace Pioneer reconnaissance aircraft that first entered service with the RoKAF in 2001. The company had previously announced in early November that the new Baekdu ISR aircraft will be based on the Dassault Falcon 2000LXS business jet and that mission systems will be developed in co-operation with LiG Nex1. (Source: Janes)
15 Dec 21. NORAD Satellites, Fighter Pilots Help Track Santa. Every December, millions of families around the world track Santa’s Yuletide journey through the North American Aerospace Defense Command’s Santa Tracker. “NORAD Tracks Santa” is a holiday tradition that started from humble origins — and as a fluke — but has now grown into a massive volunteer operation. Kids across the U.S. have grown accustomed to following Santa’s journey by tracking his flight path online or by making a good, ol’-fashioned phone call to find out where he is. They’re also able to play games and watch videos of his progress through the mobile “NORAD Tracks Santa” app.
They can do all this thanks to the hard-working folks at NORAD, who start the task of tracking Santa each November when NORADSanta.org starts getting inquiries from families. About 70 contributors help set up the site, apps and phone lines, while more than 500 uniformed personnel, Defense Department civilians, their families and supporters volunteer time on Christmas Eve to answer children’s questions on Santa’s whereabouts. While COVID-19 has reduced volunteers at traditional call centers, virtual call center capabilities will be able to pick up any slack.
Radar, Satellites and Fighter Jets
Since NORAD is the protector of the skies over North America during the rest of the year, it’s specially equipped for this mission.
“Twenty-four hours a day, 365 days a year, NORAD defends North America by tracking airplanes, missiles, space launches and anything else that flies in or around the North American continent,” said Air Force Gen. Glen D. VanHerck, NORAD’s commander. “As we have since 1955, this December 24th we are once again ready for our no-fail mission of tracking Santa.”
NORAD’s powerful radar system, called the North Warning System, has 47 installations across Alaska and northern Canada. As soon as that radar system picks up on Santa departing from the North Pole, NORAD tracks him via globally-integrated satellites using their infrared sensors. Normally, those sensors allow NORAD to see heat from launched rockets or missiles. As Santa flies around the world, satellites track his position by detecting Rudolph’s nose, which gives off an infrared signature similar to that of a missile.
NORAD also tracks Santa using U.S. Air Force F-15, F-16, F-22 and Canadian Air Force CF-18 fighter jets. On Christmas Eve, fighter pilots rendezvous with Santa off the coast of Newfoundland to welcome him to North America. They escort him safely through North American airspace until he returns to the North Pole.
The operation has become a well-oiled machine over the years, but it wasn’t always easy. In fact, the whole thing started by accident.
How the Tradition Began
Back in 1955, the folks at the previously named Continental Air Defense Command Operations Center in Colorado were working a typical night shift when Air Force Col. Harry Shoup got a phone call from a child in Colorado Springs, Colorado. The boy had followed the directions in a department store’s newspaper advertisement that told children how to call Santa — except the number had been printed incorrectly and instead called the operations center.
Shoup could have been a Scrooge about the whole thing, but he wasn’t. He entertained the boy’s call as well as the rest of the calls that came through due to the misprinted number. Throughout the night, Shoup and his operators answered calls, kicking off a new tradition.
The role of tracking the big guy rolled over to NORAD when it was formed in 1958, and it’s been getting more popular and more technologically-savvy ever since. Aside from calling in to talk, kids can now use social media and a mobile app to follow St. Nick. Virtual assistant Amazon Alexa and vehicle navigation service OnStar are also helping to track him, and the website NORADSanta.org offers a countdown clock, games and videos that are available in several languages.
The tracking of Santa is a holiday tradition around the world. In 2020, NORADSanta.org received more than 11 m visitors from 200+ countries and territories; call center volunteers answered more than 20,000 calls; Amazon Alexa was accessed more than 12.3 m times; and OnStar received about 12,400 requests to locate Santa. The @noradsanta Facebook page currently has 1.89 m followers, more than 206,000 follow along at @noradsanta on Twitter, and about 14,400 people follow @NoradTracksSanta_Official on Instagram.
The call center opens at 6 a.m. EST on Dec. 24. Kids can call 1-877-Hi-NORAD (446-6723) to find out where Santa is or use the above website, mobile app or social media. But officials warned that Santa only comes if children are asleep, so make sure they get into bed early so he doesn’t miss delivering to their house. Happy tracking, everyone! (Source: US DoD)
14 Dec 21. Orbital Insight Unveils Multiclass Object Detection Algorithms for Ships, Aircraft and Vehicles. Geospatial intelligence platform uses state-of-the-art advanced computer vision algorithms and high-resolution satellite imagery to identify different classes. Orbital Insight, the leader in geospatial intelligence, today announced the launch of multiclass object detection algorithms within its GO platform. Multiclass object detection uses advanced computer vision algorithms to identify and differentiate between classes of ships, aircraft and vehicles within satellite imagery. The state-of-the-art multiclass ship detection algorithms will bring immediate benefits to the defense and intelligence community for security, supply chain and other critical needs. Orbital Insight’s flagship GO platform is purpose-built for the DoD/Intelligence Community to deliver insights in a cloud-agnostic, secure and readily deployable environment. GO will deploy to government networks this year. GO combines information from the world’s sensors—including satellite, aerial, AIS and IoT devices—to analyze economic, societal and environmental trends at scale. The technology supports critical activity-based intelligence by helping spot trends buried within bns of data points, such as patterns at global ports, airports and buildings. The platform is also an invaluable tool for commercial sectors like financial services and real estate to understand evolving trends.
Each of the new multiclass object detection algorithms will help the military and intelligence community automatically monitor activity at thousands of areas of interest. Aircraft detection can find and separate fighters, bombers, helicopters, commercial jets and more; ship detection can identify war ships, cargo ships, fishing vessels and other fleets; and vehicle detection can differentiate between cars, trucks, railcars and soon to be mobile missile launchers and tanks.
“Understanding the movement of specific ships, aircraft and railcars is critical to our national security,” said Kevin O’Brien, CEO at Orbital Insight. “Computer vision can make this a reality at a scale and granular level of analysis that humans can’t possibly do on their own. Through these multiclass object detection algorithms, our customers will have a clearer picture of activities that have an immediate benefit to our security posture.”
Orbital Insight works with several strategic satellite and data partners to ensure customers have access to the latest and most accurate view of what’s happening on and to the Earth. For multiclass object detection, Orbital Insight leverages Planet’s SkySat constellation and Airbus’ Pleiades for clear, high-resolution global satellite imagery. The successful algorithms are the result of training the model across hundreds of thousands of images and overcoming challenges such as clustered objects, weather obstacles and low dataset diversity.
“Coupling Planet’s 50cm SkySat data with Orbital Insight’s advanced analytics provides users with deeper insight into changing conditions on the ground,” said Jim Thomason, Planet’s Vice President of Imagery and Analytics Products. “We’re eager to see the use cases this layered dataset will unlock as users more quickly identify features and make decisions in areas that matter to them most.”
Like all of Orbital Insight’s products, multiclass object detection was developed within an ethics framework that shapes the company’s work and values privacy. To learn more about Orbital Insight, visit www.orbitalinsight.com. (Source: PR Newswire)
14 Dec 21. DroneShield receives first of its kind exemption by ACMA. DroneShield Limited (ASX:DRO) (“DroneShield” or the “Company”) iis pleased to advise that the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA), the Australian Federal Government agency regulator of the communications spectrum nationally, has granted DroneShield the first exemption permit of its kind to undertake advanced testing of the Company’s Electronic Warfare and counterdrone portfolio in Australia. The exemption has appropriate safeguards in place to balance the need to develop and test advanced technologies in Australia, while maintaining restrictions around impact on the broader community. The exemption has been granted under the Radiocommunications (Exemption) Determination 2021, passed as law by the ACMA earlier this year, to enable development of advanced electronic warfare technologies for use by authorised Government agencies in Australia and for approved exports.
DroneShield CEO, Oleg Vornik, commented, “This change in law and the resulting permit, demonstrate the rapid responsiveness of the Australian Federal Government and ACMA, who have been appreciative of rapid change of the technological landscape in modern warfare and counter-terrorism. The Government agencies understood the resulting need for legislative amendments, and were fast moving in the implementation, despite current challenging times.
This permit substantially accelerates the development and optimisation of advanced Artificial Intelligence-powered electronic warfare and counter-terrorism technologies here in Australia, and we are excited to rapidly move forward in undertaking the work, at DroneShield and University of Technology Sydney (UTS) facilities.
I’m particularly excited at the direct increase this decision will mean for domestic advanced manufacturing jobs and the acceleration it means for DroneShield’s technology base as part of Australia’s Sovereign Defence Industry Capability.” DroneShield’s Artificial Intelligence development work was further recognised last evening at DefenceConnect awards, where it was the winner of the Defence Innovator of thew Year and Engineer of the Year awards.
14 Dec 21. USMC to conduct first live-fire test to ‘stress’ MRIC prototype against cruise missile threat. The US Marine Corps (USMC) is poised to host its first live-fire test of its Medium Range Intercept Capability (MRIC) prototype that integrates key components of Rafael’s Iron Dome with the service’s AN/TPS-80 Ground/Air Task Oriented Radar (G/ATOR) and its Common Aviation Command and Control System (CAC2S), Janes understands. During 2021, the service greenlit MRIC prototype production that moves the Iron Dome launcher off its base and it is repackaged on a trailer for expeditionary operations. In June, service officials told Janes that they will conduct three live-fire tests at White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico, and the first would occur towards the end of the year. One source close to the initiative said this test is set for 16 December. (Source: Janes)
14 Dec 21. BIRD Aerosystems Receives an STC for its Cessna CJ3 Special Mission Aircraft Modifications. The ASIO Modification is the first surveillance modification to be approved with an STC on a Cessna Jet worldwide. BIRD Aerosystems, a global provider of innovative defense technology and solutions that protect the air, sea, and land fleets of governments and related agencies, has received a Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) from the Civil Aviation Authority of Israel (CAAI) – for its Cessna CJ3 ASIO Special Mission Aircraft. The granted STC follows a modification of the aircraft into a special mission configuration and includes all the structural and electrical changes to the aircraft to support the installation of the airborne surveillance sensors (Radar, EOP, AIS), multiple communication equipment, and BIRD’s operator workstations and pilot display. The full STC program including the installation design, analysis, justifications and modification activities were conducted by BIRD Aerosystems’ platform engineering department and by BIRD’s MRO in Cyprus. The STC also enables a dual-use of the aircraft including a special mission surveillance configuration and a VIP configuration, furthermore allowing to change the cabin configurations without the need to dismantle the ASIO sensors and systems. The STC received by the CAAI is now also being adapted by the FAA and EASA, and will enable BIRD to provide its worldwide customers with a certified special mission aircraft solution which can be delivered in various configurations and under very short schedules.
BIRD’s ASIO Special Mission Aircraft is an end-to-end airborne Information, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) solution ideal for maritime and ground surveillance, search and rescue, patrol and monitoring. ASIO offers decision-makers and field commanders accurate, real-time terrestrial and maritime information that dramatically enhances situational awareness. A true force multiplier, ASIO enables even small crews to deliver detailed and comprehensive surveillance information covering large geographic areas.
Ronen Factor, Co-Chief Executive Officer and Founder at BIRD Aerosystems: “We are excited to announce that we have received this unique STC on a Citation Jet. The hard work invested by our internal platform engineering department and our MRO in Cyprus, together with our partners at the CAAI, enabled us to complete this challenging STC certification successfully and fulfill our mission of delivering turn-key programs to our customers. Always at the forefront of technology, we can now offer our customers a fully certified, maritime and ground surveillance aircraft solution that is cost-effective and can be delivered under very short schedules”.
10 Dec 21. UK launches Project Aether for stratospheric global comms, ISR. The UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) has issued a tender for a demonstration of an uncrewed stratospheric communications and intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) capability with a global reach in near-real time. Released on 9 December, the Project Aether tender covers a 19-month effort from 31 May 2022 through to 31 December 2023, and is valued at up to GBP100m (USD132m).
“The [MoD] has a developing requirement to demonstrate ultra-persistent wide area communications with ISR, using stratospheric uncrewed air systems that can be rapidly manoeuvred to an area of interest that is anywhere in the world,” the tender said. “The information must be available in near-real time, and be exploited using a range of existing resources. The capability must be on task for several months at a time with minimal resupply or maintenance effort.” (Source: Janes)
10 Dec 21. Dedrone and Swisscom Join Forces to Protect Against Dangerous Drones. Dedrone, a supplier of airspace security systems, and Swisscom Broadcast, a European telecommunications leader, have announced a partnership to protect people, property, and information from the threat of unauthorized drones. As part of this cooperation, the Swiss company will implement Dedrone’s market-leading counter-drone solution for its projects. Together, Dedrone and Swisscom Broadcast plan to protect critical infrastructure facilities, airports, and events, as well as companies in the pharmaceutical and watchmaking industries. Additionally, the solution will enable law enforcement agencies to ensure public safety in their regions.
“Dedrone’s Smart airspace security solution is the foundation for Swisscom Broadcast customers to protect their airspace from unauthorized drones,” shares Danny Schmid, Drone and Drone Security Leader for Swisscom Broadcast. “We have already successfully implemented our first joint projects.”
Swisscom customers protecting critical sites can now expand security protection into their airspace through Dedrone’s drone detection and threat mitigation solution. Drones are rapidly increasing in numbers from delivery to inspection; however, as more drones become useful, the threat of uncooperative or malicious drones increases. Swisscom and Dedrone now offer an airspace security solution extending security beyond the height of any fence at critical sites and across cities, allowing security providers to differentiate between cooperative drones and unauthorized or nefarious drones.
“As Switzerland helps lead the globe in drone innovation, we are thrilled to be united with Swisscom Broadcast to offer our solutions for the safe integration of drones into the Swiss airspace,” says Dedrone CEO Aaditya Devarakonda. “Dedrone is the top choice for security teams to protect the world’s most sophisticated and secure sites from drone-based interruptions, and with Swisscom Broadcast, we are delighted to deliver smart airspace security to several of Switzerland’s most prized and protected sites.”
Dedrone technology detects, identifies, locates, and mitigates drone threats enabling Swisscom Broadcast customers to now protect their airspace. Swisscom supports its customers through every step of the Dedrone implementation – from the basic module for detecting drones to integration with drone defence systems. The Dedrone and Swisscom drone defence system meets the requirements of the German and the Swiss U-Space platform. (Source: UAS VISION)
10 Dec 21. Embraer and the Brazilian Army Present the SABER M200 VIGILANTE Radar for Early Warning Air Surveillance. Today, Embraer and the Brazilian Army (EB) presented the SABER M200 VIGILANTE radar during an event at Embraer’s Campinas unit. As a result of the radar’s joint development for the Brazilian Government, the Brazilian radar was developed to support the country’s anti-aircraft defense units, as well as to increase Embraer’s product portfolio and export integrated defense systems.
“We are proud to witness this event with Embraer. Over more than 15 years of joint work, the synergy between the Brazilian Army and Embraer has made it possible to achieve Brazilian autonomy in the development of technological capability of the native digital radars. The new radars are made with phased array technology, which will expand our troops capabilities, as well as maintaining the ongoing operation with the support of our Defense Industrial Base (BID),” said Army General Guido Amin Naves, Head of the Army’s Department of Science and Technology (DCT).
The new Brazilian ground-based radar will have the objective of meeting the needs of the Brazilian Armed Forces in their low-altitude surveillance missions of anti-aircraft defense. Developed in Brazil by Embraer and the Army Technological Center (CTEx), a military organization part of the Army’s Science, Technology and Innovation System (SCTIEx), the SABER M200 VIGILANTE radar aims to furnish the Ground Force’s Anti-Aircraft Artillery Units, powered by the most up-to-date radar technologies, available only in a few countries.
“At this event, we celebrate an important stage in our collaboration with the Brazilian Army. For the presentation of the first SABER M200 VIGILANTE radar, through Embraer’s engineering capabilities and complex project management processes, we were able to overcome several technological challenges alongside the Army throughout its development. The adoption of the radar and the start of operations by the Land Force will be important for validating the solution aiming future exports”, said Jackson Schneider, President and CEO of Embraer Defense and Security.
This new development will integrate into the family of Brazilian radars, which includes the SABER M60 radar, focused on the search of air targets and integrated into an Anti-Aircraft Operations Center, and the SENTIR M20 radar, for monitoring ground targets and being used in the Brazilian Border Monitoring System (SISFRON). In addition, the family of national radars will soon have a new research and development output, the SABER M200 Multi-Mission radar, which will integrate Medium Height Anti-Aircraft Defense Systems.
These efforts from the Brazilian Army and Embraer were supported by BID and development agencies, highlighting the contributions of the Financier of Studies and Projects (FINEP) and the National Bank for Economic and Social Development (BNDES).
03 Nov21. Cambridge Pixel Supplies BAE Systems with Radar Processing for New Type 26 Ships.
- Award- winning radar technology provider supports BAE Systems in kitting out the high-tech future vessels of the Royal Navy.
The new Type 26 vessels are part of a programme known as the Global Combat Ship, that was launched by the UK Ministry of Defence. Their primary role will be to conduct advanced anti-submarine warfare missions while supporting air defence and general operations. Type 26s will be vital ships for security of shipping around the world for many years to come. UK State Defence Minister Baroness Annabel Goldie said: “These new frigates will be equipped with the most advanced capabilities and technologies, enabling the Royal Navy to counter emerging global threats for decades to come.”
In terms of their surveillance and sensor capabilities, each Type 26 ship will be fitted with the BAE Type 997 Artisan 3D air and surface surveillance radar, solid state X and S band navigation radars and a long range IFF interrogator, as well as electro-optical and infrared systems.
Cambridge Pixel will be supplying its latest generation of SPx radar processing and display software to BAE Systems for the visualisation of primary and IFF video onboard the Combat Management System (CMS) of the new ships. Cambridge Pixel’s SPx radar display software will be integrated into the CMS to receive and display primary and IFF video, with options to combine multiple videos from the two navigation radars on the ship, as well as support per-console combination of different radars. This provides a high degree of flexibility to configure each display with just the relevant information for the operational role of the display.
Cambridge Pixel’s SPx software will also be provided for server-side radar processing and network distribution, delivering encoded radar video into the virtualised client displays. Within each client, radar information can be combined with map and tactical data to form a complete situational awareness picture. Each client is able to combine different radar layers into a desired picture with track overlays, allowing just the essential information to be presented for each situation.
“The Cambridge Pixel software delivers considerable flexibility in the way radar information can be processed and distributed around the ship. It supports the Type 26 Combat System architecture, reduces cost compared to legacy designs and, when integrated with the Combat System allows situational awareness to be presented to the command team where and when its needed.” Steve Carter, Combat System Equipment Programme Delivery Director, BAE Systems
Commenting on the project, Cambridge Pixel’s Managing Director, David Johnson said “We are pleased to continue our long-standing relationship with BAE systems, providing our SPx radar processing software for the new Type 26 ships.”
Under the Type 26 programme, roughly 4,000 jobs are expected to be generated across the UK supply chain. Cambridge Pixel are a proud supplier to BAE Systems with an existing and a long-standing working relationship. Cambridge Pixel’s engineers have been working with BAE Systems for over a decade providing them with ongoing support whenever it is needed, almost as an extension of their own team.
“We are proud to support BAE’s engineers with our expertise in radar display to help build the best possible systems for the Royal Navy. We’ve enjoyed working with them for more than 10 years, including the deployment of our technologies on the Type 45 ships and the Queen Elizabeth Class aircraft carriers…” said Richard Warren, Director of Software at Cambridge Pixel.
09 Dec 21. The New Smart Display from Intellisense Systems Brings Multi-Core Processing Technology to the Avionics Market. The Smart Video Display 6 x 8 (SVDT-0608) offers advanced processing and graphics capability with an open architecture for a variety of aircraft. Intellisense Systems, Inc., a leading provider of avionics and multi-function display systems, introduces the Smart Video Display Terminal 6 x 8 (SVDT–0608). This new 10.4-in. display integrates a single-board computer, graphics capabilities, I/O, and avionics interfaces. The SVDT–0608 is built with open standards to enable future growth and flexibility, which greatly bolsters the system’s sustainability and reliability while reducing cost of ownership. It is designed for new aircraft developments and modernization programs, and to meet the challenges of diminishing manufacturing sources (DMS) with form-fit-function replacement displays.
Like the existing VDT–0608 from Intellisense, the SVDT–0608 uses a 16.7m-color active-matrix liquid-crystal display (AMLCD) with XGA (1024 x 768) resolution, that provides wide viewing angles, sunlight readability, NVIS-compatibility, and is available in both landscape and portrait orientation. This new smart version adds six 3U VITA 65 OpenVPX modules with multiple spare slots to enable future hardware upgrades. The system can be adapted with alternate processing, I/O, and custom-made VPX modules. The SVDT–0608 also incorporates touchscreen technology, offering resistive multi-touch or infrared touchscreen options, as well as a fully customizable bezel. The advanced SBC offers high-end Intel Xeon 7th Generation processing and graphics capability for hosting customer-developed software applications. The SVDT–0608 is designed for a wide variety of avionics interfacing capabilities, including Gigabit Ethernet and dual-redundant MIL-STD-1553 channels.
“The SVDT–0608 represents an important leap forward for us,” said Zel Ulman, Vice President of Business Development at Intellisense. “Intellisense is already recognized by customers with our ‘speed to need’ and customer-first philosophy. We are adding this new display to our growing lineup of outstanding and cost-effective military and commercial display products to meet our customer’s needs. This is our first commercially available smart display for aviation customers. Any of our existing avionics displays, including our 10.4-in., 15-in., or 20-in. by 8-in. LAD, can be customized to meet program requirements. The SVDT-0608 gives our customers an open architecture platform that adheres to Modular Open Systems Approach (MOSA) standards while meeting operational, environmental, and reliability requirements.”
The SVDT-0608 is available with several additional features, including digital video interfaces such as ARINC-818 and HD-SDI and communication protocols such as ARINC-429 and ARINC-825, for a variety of aircraft cockpit lighting conditions. Intellisense manufactures all avionics display products under ISO 9001, AS9100, AS9110, and CMMI-DEV Level 3 standards, and the company expects to bring this advanced display and computing platform to other display sizes, such as the LAD–2008.
About Intellisense Systems, Inc.
Intellisense Systems, Inc. is a leading provider of advanced sensing and display solutions supporting a data continuum from acquisition to visualization. We enhance our hardware with software that adds intelligence to our systems and can turn raw data into useful information for improved decision making and process automation. Intellisense Systems offers both off-the-shelf products and custom development services. These services include research and development, requirements analysis, design, systems integration, prototyping, production, testing, field support, and training. Headquartered in the South Bay area of Los Angeles, the company occupies 70,000 square feet within our Torrance campus. Our manufacturing capabilities include electronics fabrication, unit qualification testing, systems integration, and volume production with full quality assurance. Intellisense Systems is qualified across engineering, accounting, and manufacturing to serve government and commercial customers. (Source: PR Newswire)
Blighter Surveillance Systems is a world-leading designer and manufacturer of best-in-class electronic-scanning ground-based radars, surveillance solutions and Counter-UAS systems. Blighter’s solid-state micro-Doppler products are deployed in more than 35 countries across the globe, delivering consistent all-weather security protection and wide area surveillance along borders, coastlines, at military bases and across critical infrastructure such as airports, oil and gas facilities and palaces. Blighter radars are also used to protect manoeuvre force missions when deployed on military land vehicles and trailers, and its world-beating multi-mode radar represents a great leap in threat detection technology and affordability for use in a variety of scenarios.
The Blighter range of radar products are used for detecting a variety of threats, from individuals on foot to land vehicles, boats, drones and low-flying aircraft at ranges of up to 32 km. Blighter Surveillance Systems employs 40 people and is located near Cambridge, UK, where it designs, produces and markets its range of unique patented solid-state radars. Blighter prides itself on being an engineer-led business committed to providing cost-effective and flexible solutions across the defence, critical infrastructure and national security markets.