Sponsored by Blighter Surveillance Systems
17 Jun 20. Important decision for Germany as a technology base. Sensor supplier HENSOLDT welcomes the German Bundestag’s release of a budget for Eurofighter AESA radar and multi-purpose warship MKS 180. Sensor systems supplier HENSOLDT has welcomed today’s decision by the German Bundestag to develop the new AESA (= Active Electronic Scanning Array) radar for the entire German Eurofighter fleet as a positive signal for Germany as a technology base and for successful European cooperation in the defence sector.
“With this decision, Germany is taking on a pioneering role in the field of key technology for the Eurofighter for the first time,” said HENSOLDT CEO Thomas Müller. “This will create high-tech jobs in Germany and give the Bundeswehr the equipment it needs to respond to new threats. In addition, it is a signal for Europe that Germany is investing in a technology that is of crucial importance for European defence cooperation”.
With the release of the budget for the development, production and integration of a new radar for the Eurofighter combat aircraft – HENSOLDT’s share is over 1.5bn euros – the Bundestag’s Budget Committee has cleared the way for the modernization of the Eurofighter in one crucial area, sensor technology. In contrast to the development of the radar to date in a consortium under British leadership, radar system responsibility will now pass into the hands of the German radar house HENSOLDT.
The company, based in Taufkirchen, Bavaria, was already involved in the development and production of the Eurofighter sensor technology currently in use. HENSOLDT employs 2,000 people at its radar centre in Ulm. In the Eurofighter radar departments alone an increase of 400 highly qualified jobs is expected over the duration of the programme. In radar development, the company works closely with the main contractor Airbus and the Spanish defence electronics group Indra.
At the same time, the Bundestag also approved the budget for the procurement of four MKS 180 multi-purpose combat ships for the German Navy. As a result of the product specification, HENSOLDT is supplying four TRS-4D naval radars, also based on AESA technology for this project. Radars of this type are already deployed on several German Navy ships.
17 Jun 20. United Kingdom-Bristol: Telescopic sights.
Prior information notice for contracts in the field of defence and security
Section I: Contracting authority/entity
I.1)Name, addresses and contact point(s)
Official name: Ministry of Defence, Land Equipment, Dismounted Close Combat (DCC)
Postal address: Neighbourhood 3 Cedar 2A #3260, Abbeywood Filton
Postal code: BS34 8JH
Country: United Kingdom
Telephone: +44 3067987202
General address of the contracting authority/entity: https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/ministry-of-defence
Further information can be obtained from:
The above mentioned contact point(s)
I.2)Type of the contracting authority
Ministry or any other national or federal authority, including their regional or local sub-divisions
I.4)Contract award on behalf of other contracting authorities/entities
The contracting authority/entity is purchasing on behalf of other contracting authorities/entities: no
Section II: Object of the contract
II.1)Title attributed to the contract by the contracting authority/entity:
Fused Target Locator — Handheld Dismounted Optical System
II.2)Type of contract and location of works, place of delivery or of performance
Main site or location of works, place of delivery or of performance:
UKK1 Gloucestershire, Wiltshire and Bristol/Bath area
II.3)Information on framework agreement
II.4)Short description of nature and scope of works or nature and quantity or value of supplies or services:
The Light Cavalry (Lt Cav) Regiments provide persistent, all weather, mounted tactical reconnaissance in the land environment across the whole mosaic of conflict and are predominantly a find, understand and influence capability.
The user requires a light weight, low signature, multi-sensor Surveillance and Target Acquisition (STA) system that is man portable, vehicle mountable and will detect, recognise and identify the likely adversary at a range which enables timely and effective decision making.
The project will provide a solution that is both hand-held and mast mounted, giving the user increased capability to operate in the mounted and dismounted roles.
The anticipated in-service life of the capability is 10 years.
Any system must have DRI ranges that exceed current capabilities with the expectation that the system can provide the user the ability to operate in all weather and all light conditions without the requirement for artificial illumination.
Estimated value excluding VAT:
Range: between 10 000 000 and 20 000 000 GBP
This contract is divided into lots: no
II.5)Common procurement vocabulary (CPV)
38633000 Telescopic sights
II.6)Scheduled date for start of award procedures and duration of the contract
Scheduled date for start of award procedures: 2.11.2020
The indicative timelines for the FTL project are based on the funding profile and are detailed as follows:
1) Concept and assessment phase: June 20 – May 21;
2) Anticipated ITT issue date is Nov 20;
3) Contract award date: anticipated June 21;
4) Demonstration and manufacture: June 21 – Mar 24;
5) In-service phase: Feb 22 – Jan 32;
6) Disposal: Mar 32.
Companies interested in this PIN are not currently required to take any action. However, DE&S would like to have visibility of interested parties and ask they inform the following contact point of their details, equipment they currently have available and any developments they have that will meet the stated timelines.
Please register your interest with Robin Griffiths at Robin.Griffiths988@mod.gov.uk telephone number 07576831601
The authority is intending to hold Industry Days at Army Trials Development Unit (ATDU) located at Bovington in Dorset from the 6 to 8 July to engage the market to understand the technical readiness of the market to deliver against the requirement.
Social Distancing shall be in effect at all times during the event.
Section III: Legal, economic, financial and technical information
III.1)Conditions relating to the contract
III.1.1)Main financing conditions and payment arrangements and/or reference to the relevant provisions governing them:
III.2)Conditions for participation
III.2.1)Information about reserved contracts
Section VI: Complementary information
VI.1)Information about European Union funds
The contract is related to a project and/or programme financed by European Union funds: no
The authority reserves the right to amend any condition related to security of information to reflect any changes in national law or government policy. If any contract documents are accompanied by instructions on safeguarding classified information (e.g. a Security Aspects Letter), the authority reserves the right to amend the terms of these instructions to reflect any changes in national law or government policy, whether in respect of the applicable protective marking scheme, specific protective markings given, the aspects to which any protective marking applies, or otherwise. The link below to the Gov.uk website provides information on the Government Security Classification.
Advertising Regime OJEU: this contract opportunity is published in the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU), the MoD Defence Contracts Bulletin and www.contracts.mod.uk GO Reference: GO-2020612-DCB-16730380
VI.3)Information on general regulatory framework
VI.4)Date of dispatch of this notice:
12.6.2020 (Source: Europa TED)
16 Jun 20. UK resumes air defence infrastructure upgrade after COVID-related hiatus. The RAF plans by the end of the year to complete upgrade work to the physical infrastructure supporting a ground-based air surveillance radar in northeast England.
Shephard understands from the UK MoD that the COVID-19 pandemic had delayed work to rehouse the RAF-operated Lockheed Martin AN/TPS-77 L-band (1.215-1.4 GHz to 1/4GHz) ground-based air surveillance radar in a new radome at Remote Radar Head (RRH) Brizlee Wood near the Northumberland coast.
With an instrumented range of 250nm (470km), the radar monitors the northeastern air approaches to England, feeding imagery into the RAF UK Air Surveillance and Control System (UKASACS). This constitutes the C2 and battle management component of the RAF’s Integrated Air Defence System (IADS).
In a statement, the MoD noted that the radome upgrade is being undertaken to ‘ensure that RRH Brizlee Wood continues as an integral component of the UK’s air defence system, through the provision of new, purpose-built buildings’ to house the AN/TPS-77.
Work on this initiative began in 2019, although the MoD conceded that ‘delivery of the project has been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic’, delaying completion until the end of 2020. It believes that fine weather forecast over the summer will allow upgrade work to accelerate.
Structural modernisation of RRH Brizlee Wood occurs against the backdrop of an overarching modernisation of the UK IADS in recent years. This has seen the acquisition of new AN/TPS-77 radars, known in RAF nomenclature as the Type-92, deliveries of which began in the last decade.
The acquisition of these radars was necessary as they are unaffected by the clutter caused by the spinning blades of wind turbines. The UK has windfarms in the vicinity of several of its RRHs, particularly those providing coverage over the country’s east coast.
Meanwhile, the C2 aspect of the UKASACS is being enhanced via the MoD’s Project Guardian initiative. This will install new hardware, software and communications architecture at RAF Boulmer and RAF Scampton.
The UK is responsible for providing surveillance over NATO Air Policing Area-1, which also includes Norwegian and Icelandic airspace. The facility at RRH Brizlee Wood may also house fighter controllers to vector RAF Eurofighter Typhoon F/GR4A jets during intercepts of uncooperative aircraft occurring within the radar’s FOV.
The UKASACS element of the IADS is commanded from RAF Boulmer in northeast England, which federates the radar pictures from disparate RRHs around the country into a single recognised air picture of the UK’s airspace and the air approaches. A backup facility for RAF Boulmer is provided at RAF Scampton in Lincolnshire, eastern England. (Source: Shephard)
15 Jun 20. FLIR Unveils Innovative ‘380X’ Upgrade for its Star SAFIRE Long-Range Imaging Systems. FLIR Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ: FLIR) announced today the release of the Star SAFIRE® 380X hardware, firmware and software upgrade to support advanced image-aiding features for its globally deployed Star SAFIRE gimbal systems, including Star SAFIRE 380-HD and 380-HDc.
FLIR Star SAFIRE imaging systems are fielded on fixed-wing aircraft and helicopters worldwide. Their ultra-long-range visible and thermal imaging cameras are used for a wide range of military, search and rescue, border and coastal surveillance, and airborne law enforcement applications. The new 380X hardware, firmware, and software upgrade supports advanced features that reduce operator workload for faster, smarter decision support. (Photo: Business Wire)
Relied on by defense and police forces in more than 40 countries for its ultra-long-range visible and thermal imaging capabilities, FLIR Star SAFIRE systems are fielded on fixed-wing aircraft and helicopters and used for a wide range of military, search and rescue, border and coastal surveillance, and airborne law enforcement applications. The all-encompassing 380X upgrade reduces operator workload for faster, smarter decision support. It features customizable configurations for multi-tile video management and visual user interface, as well as touchscreen and streaming tablet support.
The new 380X technology provides operators with:
- Better Clarity: Operators can see more details with the 380X’s de-scintillation filter that removes atmospheric effects to reveal fine details otherwise hard to detect.
- Multiple Video Management: This feature allows operators to view multiple video sources simultaneously, including all camera payloads, plus external video input.
- New User Interface: Operators can now navigate menus with customizable icon-based graphics to expedite inputs when needed.
- Improved Targeting: The upgrade’s Moving Target Indicator (MTI) helps identify threats earlier and more definitively. Future enhancement includes augmented reality overlays to identify friendly positions and no fire/restricted fire areas.
- Augmented Reality (coming Q2-2021): Future AR mapping overlays will improve situational awareness, depicting missions in the live environment, increasing user understanding and expediting better, smarter decisions.
“This innovative 380X upgrade introduces technology enhancements that reduce cognitive load and will harness the full potential of artificial intelligence to boost customer mission success,” said FLIR Vice President and General Manager of Sensor Systems Tim Durham. “FLIR is focused on saving lives and livelihoods, and we’re extremely proud of the performance and legacy of our Star SAFIRE systems. These new features extend their capability and will help reduce strain on operators during long and challenging missions.”
Star SAFIRE gimbal systems provide superior image stabilization and ultra-long-range imaging performance for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR), search and rescue (SAR), border patrol, maritime patrol, force protection, and forward observation missions.
The 380X upgrade is currently available for Star SAFIRE 380-HD and 380-HDc systems. Learn more at www.flir.com/380X.
11 Jun 20. Researchers develop low cost detect and avoid system using gaming software and cameras. An article published by Geospatial World reports a low-cost method for autonomous collision detection and avoidance on drones of all sizes developed by a research team using video game software and stereo cameras.
According to the report, a team of researchers from Madrid Polytechnic University, MIT, and Texas A&M University developed a collision monitoring and avoidance system for small drones under 2kg using a simple camera and data processing. With size and constraints in place, typical sensors like LIDAR, radar, and acoustic sensors were not practical.
The researchers were building on a previous 2018 project, reducing power needs and using low-cost conventional cameras and basic computing without any sort of middleware. The end result needed to fully integrate into a small quadcopter and enable that vehicle to monitor and avoid multiple nearby flying vehicles.
The key realization driving the project was that these normal cameras, in pairs, can mimic human depth perception and rely on more digestible data that proves more reliable in practice than some alternatives.
By measuring the differences in geometry of two images taken side-by-side, stereo camera depth mapping enables a system to identify bodies that may pose threats to an autonomous vehicle. In its first iteration of this technology, the team accomplished exactly that identification of threats. Achieving this with simple cameras required reliable frameworks for identifying, sizing, and tracking the motion of those bodies. To construct these frameworks, the team leveraged Microsoft AirSim.
For their purpose of building a collision avoidance system, the depth map research team used AirSim to model complex environments, simulate drones in flight for training, and precisely control image capture for collecting training and modeling content to be consumed by their machine learning application.
With independent left and right perspectives captured, the team was able to create photo-realistic renders for size detection, position detection, and depth mapping of drones both in static positions and in motion. Leveraging these working models, they further economized the product being packaged with their drone by writing the logic in C++ and C/CUDA. These basic languages require no complex middleware to process images and inferences during flight. They were even able to reduce resource needs by using a single storage module for both image storage and interpretation.
After creating models, training and testing an AI, and preparing the test vehicle, the team’s published results show great progress in their working concept. The outfitted drone tested was able to identify, track, and make flight path corrections in reaction to other drones of several sizes in complicated environments that required tracking both static and moving obstructions.
11 Jun 20. USAF base collaborates with local drone detection company AeroDefense. US Air Force Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, NJ, has partnered with AeroDefense, a local business specialising in tracking technology and drone detection, to produce a system to track drones across the installation as well as pinpoint perpetrators who fly them.
AeroDefense was selected in the Small Business Innovation Research program, which is managed by AFWERX, Air Force Innovation team and the Air Force Research Laboratory.
Approximately USD400,000 has been committed to AeroDefense from the 87th Security Forces Squadron and 621st Contingency Response Squadron on Joint Base MDL. When awarded the contract from the SBIR, AeroDefense will gain an additional USD800,000 from the Department of Defense to continue their work.
“With a two-to-one matching ratio given by the AFRL, the company will receive a grant of USD1.2m to grow the technology,” said U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Jason Falkner, 87th Contracting Squadron services support flight NCO in charge. “Both units will receive equipment that they helped develop and AeroDefense will have a viable commercial product to sell to the nation at large, including other military installations.”
AeroDefense currently has drone detection and tracking technology in use at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, NJ, but is aiming to provide more compact technology including mobile site and vehicle detection for military application with the money from the grant.
With the nationwide increase of drone activity around correctional facilities, the 87 SFS will be able to use the developed technology at the Federal Correctional Institute on Fort Dix to deter contraband being delivered into the facility. For the 621 CRS, they will be able to use the technology in the field and other countries with their frequency of missions across the globe.
Earlier this year, Joint Base MDL unveiled the new dronebuster technology to intercept drones over the installation but will look to expand with the new technology.
“The strategic value of working with AeroDefense is found in their proprietary technologies unique ability to locate both the drone and the pilot flying the drone,” said U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Jarrod Kologinsky, 87th SFS Standards and Evaluations section chief. The ability to detect not only the drone, but also the exact physical location of the operator fills a critical gap in our ability to defend the installation against unauthorized small unmanned aerial systems activity. The end product of this joint collaboration will be a ruggedized, portable, sUAS-detection technology built to handle Air Force fielding and deployment requirements.”
This partnership between the two parties will allow AeroDefense to a build relationship with Joint Base MDL personnel, while also introduce them to the installation mission and offer their professional expertise to help solve problems in the drone detection and tracking-technology field.
For more information visit:
https://www.jbmdl.jb.mil/News/Article-Display/Article/2208839/joint-base-mdl-to-partner-with-aerodefense-to-strengthen-drone-deterrence/ (Source: www.unmannedairspace.info)
12 Jun 20. New counter drone platform from NSO Group provides autonomous response. The Israeli technology developer NSO Group has launched a counter drone platform designed to automatically detect, take over and safely land unauthorized commercial drones in a designated zone. NSO Shield is a suite of products aimed at countering emerging threats to public safety. The first product, Eclipse, is designed to counter rogue drones before they become a threat.
According to the NSO press release, Eclipse provides an autonomous cyber solution to detect activity within a designated perimeter, identify the presence of drones, take over control of drones which present a threat, and land them safely. It is designed not to jam existing communications platforms, has no impact on wireless communications and GPS signals, and is FCC, CE and CB compliant.
The system offers a threat mitigation capability for dense urban environments, stadiums, critical infrastructure, airports, landmarks, and private enterprises, with smooth integration connecting to existing infrastructure.
NSO licenses software solutions to governments and law enforcement agencies to investigate and prevent terror acts, fight crime and increase public safety.
For more information visit:
15 Jun 20. Liteye Announces New Field Operations Divisions. Liteye Systems, Inc., has announced the formation of its new Field Operations division to provide consultation, fielding, training, services, and support operations for all Counter UAS activities.
Liteye is a world leader in Counter Unmanned Aerial Systems (CUAS), ruggedized thermal cameras and helmet mounted displays with over $100M in US Government contracts and Counter UAS solutions deployed worldwide.
“Our team has combat support experience and has seen enemy tactics and techniques first-hand. They know the intricacies of AUDS, electronic warfare and the combined arms approach to fighting this threat. I place tremendous value in having this team as part of Liteye,” said Kenneth Geyer, CEO and Co-Founder of Liteye Systems.
The Field Operations Division is built on the experience of supporting one of the first ever deployed combat proven C-UAS systems in existence, the Liteye Anti-UAS Defense System (AUDS). Liteye AUDS has been deployed with the US Military since 2016.
Operational services include 24/7 technical field support, hardware/software installation, on-site service, maintenance, and red team tactical support. Additionally, the Field Operations Team can provide on-site tactical surveys, training for rapid deployment and surge support for maintenance and system operation.
“As Liteye systems continue to be deployed down range, we felt it essential to establish a division that is focused solely on meeting the needs of the system operators. In addition to routine maintenance and repair, our talented group of former downrange operators and Field Service Representatives (FSRs) will ensure that our system operators are effectively trained and informed of technology advancements allowing them to stay ahead of the rapidly evolving threats. This is a significant investment by Liteye to ensure that these complex, highly capable, multi-mission systems are fully utilized and maintained to support the missions for years to come” said Zac Neumayr, VP of Strategic Accounts and Field Operations Division, Liteye Systems.
“We have a robust training program to certify our FSRs and we are the only ones that can provide that service. We also have the clearances and certifications to travel anywhere our system is deployed. We’re dedicated to ensuring our customers can perform their mission.” said one of Liteye’s senior Field Operations Manager.
Liteye has delivered essential equipment to the US Government for over 20 years and has sustained growth with the Anti-UAS Defense System (AUDS) as a Combat Proven product with over 1000 defeats against enemy drones flown by ISIS, Taliban and others. Liteye’s products continue to be a game-changing force to protect airfields, government installations and critical infrastructure across the US Government. (Source: UAS VISION)
08 Jun 20. Wanted: Industry input on Countering Unmanned Airborne systems. EDA issued recently a call for industry ideas and contributions in advance of the second ‘Countering Unmanned Airborne systems (C-UAS) Workshop’ scheduled to take place on 15 September 2020.
After a first workshop jointly organised by EDA and the EU Military Staff last February (with participation from Member States, the European Commission and other institutional stakeholders), the aim is now to invite industry to the second workshop in autumn.
Companies active in the C-UAS domain are therefore invited to respond to this CUAS Questionnaire by 3 July.
Participation is open to companies of any size as well as academic, research institutes and associations or groupings of industrial suppliers. Speakers will be selected based on their replies to the call for papers, which will be evaluated by EDA.
Whereas the first workshop in February was mainly devoted to identifying already available solutions that could be used in support of on-going CSDP operations and missions, the upcoming second event on 15 September will be focused on future capability development efforts related to C-UAS based on the Air Superiority priority agreed by Member States in 2018 as part of the 11 European Capability Development Priorities, as well as the corresponding Strategic Context Case (SCCs).
During this second workshop, selected industry representatives will be invited to present their views to Member States focusing on the topics included in the call for papers and to make comments and suggestions on further perspectives which could inform capability development and R&T in the selected area. This should also include the long-term industrial and technological prospects (beyond 20 years) of potential relevance also to EDA’s work on Key Strategic Activities (KSA) in this critical domain.
Contributions must be submitted to EDA at CAP@eda.europa.eu with a copy to firstname.lastname@example.org by 3 July 2020. (Source: EDA)
11 Jun 20. Cobham Advanced Electronic Solutions Announces New Millimeterwave AESA Capability for High Reliability Applications. Cobham Advanced Electronic Solutions (CAES), a leading provider of mission critical electronic solutions, announced a capability to develop new millimeterwave (mmW) Active Electronically Scanned Arrays (AESA) for airborne early warning radar, intercept or acquisition control, ballistic missile warning and acquisition surveillance, mapping and missile tracking and guidance applications. Frequencies under development include Ka-Band and W-Band. Due to the technical challenges of deploying AESA architectures in this frequency range, CAES is one of only a handful of organizations with the capability to develop such solutions.
“Our AESA technology incorporates the best capabilities from our broad portfolio of technologies, representing an integrated aperture to data architecture. As one of only a handful of companies able to provide this capability, Cobham Advanced Electronic Solutions is able to achieve this milestone due to our legacy in antenna and aperture design and mastery of the front end of advanced systems combined with our familiarity with the needs of aerospace and defense customers.,” said Jeff Hassannia, Senior Vice President of Business Development, Strategy and Technology for Cobham Advanced Electronic Solutions. “It is critical to offer cutting-edge sensor technologies in partnership with our customers to deliver solutions aligned with program needs and the needs of our warfighters. We are very excited about this.”
“Advanced packaging of System-on-a-Chip (SoC) solutions with fully integrated subsystems widens opportunities to deliver this strategically important technology to defense primes and key subsystem providers. Its modular, extremely scalable design allows system designers to deploy anywhere from a few elements to thousands, as the application requires,” he continued.
The CAES mmW AESA leverages SoC Integrated Circuit (IC) technology and innovative packaging techniques such as flip chip and bumped die. Additionally, it boasts higher transmit power and rugged assemblies for integrated multi-channel Gallium Nitride (GaN) Transmit/Receive Monolithic Microwave Integrated Circuits (MMIC).
The evolving Multiple Inputs Multiple Outputs (MIMO) feature offers extended virtual receive channels, improved angular resolution, and interference immunity associated with digitally coded channels. These extended capabilities will also offer improved range resolution, better signal to noise ratio (SNR) at similar frame rates, and faster updates with short system cycles. The system will also switch between phase array modes and massive MIMO processing mode or a combination thereof. Advanced digital processing ICs utilizing these capabilities result in four-dimensional (4D) detection datasets with spatial position and velocity for many targets. (Source: ASD Network)
Blighter® Surveillance Systems (BSS) is a UK-based electronic-scanning radar and sensor solution provider delivering an integrated multi-sensor package to systems integrators comprising the Blighter electronic-scanning radars, cameras, thermal imagers, trackers and software solutions. Blighter radars combine patented solid-state Passive Electronic Scanning Array (PESA) technology with advanced Frequency Modulated Continuous Wave (FMCW) and Doppler processing to provide a robust and persistent surveillance capability. Blighter Surveillance Systems is a Plextek Group company, a leading British design house and technology innovator, and is based at Great Chesterford on the outskirts of Cambridge, England.
The Blighter electronic-scanning (e-scan) FMCW Doppler ground surveillance radar (GSR) is a unique patented product that provides robust intruder detection capabilities under the most difficult terrain and weather conditions. With no mechanical moving parts and 100% solid-state design, the Blighter radar family of products are extremely reliable and robust and require no routine maintenance for five years. The Blighter radar can operate over land and water rapidly searching for intruders as small a crawling person, kayaks and even low-flying objects. In its long-range modes the Blighter radar can rapidly scan an area in excess of 3,000 km² to ensure that intruders are detected, identified and intercepted before they reach critical areas.