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21 Nov 19. NATO to upgrade its AWACS surveillance aircraft for $1bn. NATO officials plan to spend $1bn on upgrades to the alliance’s fleet of AWACS reconnaissance planes, according to Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg.
“I can confirm we will sign a contract upgrading, modernizing the AWACS fleet — $1bn,” Stoltenberg was quoted as telling reporters ahead of a meeting of NATO foreign ministers in Brussels on Wednesday.
The news comes coupled with an announcement that the first of five Global Hawk drones making up the Alliance Ground Surveillance program was en route from the United States to its future home base at Sigonella, Sicily.
“This reflects how NATO is investing in high-tech capabilities,” NATO spokeswoman Oana Lungescu wrote on Twitter.
The Boeing-made AWACS planes, introduced in 1982, are slated to remain in service until 2035. Their job is to detect enemy missiles and aircraft threatening NATO airspace. Alliance pilots have flown the aircraft to support missions against the Islamic State group and to secure the eastern flank in the wake of Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2014.
NATO’s website bills the AWACS enterprise as the “largest collaborative venture” and one of the few military assets owned and operated by the alliance.
The fleet of AGS drones is based on the Northrop Grumman-made Block 40 Global Hawk of the U.S. Air Force. The primary job of the UAVs will be ground and maritime surveillance for commanders and deployed forces.
The two announcements come as the alliance is in dire need of signs of life after French President Emmanuel Macron famously declared NATO “brain dead” in an interview with the Economist magazine some weeks ago. While experts are still debating whether the vivid assessment was constructive in nature or rather an unnecessary dig at an alliance already weakened by trans-Atlantic squabbling, there are signs that key European nations like Germany and France have plans to reanimate the pact.
German Foreign Affairs Minister Heiko Maas on Wednesday referred to the alliance as Europe’s “life insurance,” proposing a reform commission headed by Stoltenberg.
NATO members’ heads of state are slated to convene in London in early December. U.S. President Donald Trump is expected to attend the summit, determining in large part whether the alliance will be able to celebrate a revival or witness something of a funeral.
20 Nov 19. Diamond Aircraft adds TS-80 radar to DA62 MSA options. Austrian aircraft manufacturer Diamond Aircraft and Italy’s Leonardo announced at the Dubai Airshow that the two companies were now offering the Leonardo Gabbiano Ultra-Light TS-80 radar as an option on the Diamond Aircraft DA62 MSA. Integration of the radar onto the aircraft is expected to be completed by early 2020. The aircraft, which was launched at the Paris Air Show in June, was initially equipped with a TS-20 radar. The TS-80, which can output 80 watts of power, can provide longer-range surveillance than the TS-20. The system is integrated with the Gabbiano mission system suite, which allows for the aircraft to conduct missions such as air-to-sea surveillance with Track While Scan (TWS), high-resolution ground mapping, ship target imaging and classification, and navigation with ground mapping and weather avoidance.
The DA62 MSA was developed in conjunction with Leonardo, fitting a Leonardo ATOS (Airborne Tactical Observation and Surveillance) mission system, TS-20 radar, and electro-optic/infra-red (EO/IR) turret onto the Diamond Aircraft DA62.
Additional sensor systems that could be incorporated onto the platform include Leonardo’s SAGE electronic support measures system for radio-frequency electronic intelligence gathering, and the Spider communications intelligence system for direction finding, interception, and geolocation of communications signals. The news comes shortly after Diamond Aircraft demonstrated another variant of the DA62, the MPP, to the UAE. The aircraft is fitted with a spine-mounted Thuraya Aero Satellite System and a nose-mounted Trakka SWE-400 LE EO/IR gimbal. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
20 Nov 19. JY-27A radar spotted in Pakistan. Key Points:
- Jane’s has identified a JY-27A CVLO radar in imagery captured of Mianwali Air Base in Pakistan
- A modern VHF-band system, China’s JY-27A was not previously known to have been exported to Pakistan
Satellite imagery captured on 29 August has revealed a China Electronics Technology Group Corporation (CETC) JY-27A counter-very-low-observable (CVLO) radar at Mianwali Air Base (AB) in Pakistan. Imagery examination indicates the radar arrived between 5 June and 29 August and was not yet fully erected as of 2 September.
The sale of the JY-27A to Pakistan has gone unnoticed in the open press, with most air-defence-related reporting concerned with Pakistan’s desire to import advanced Chinese surface-to-air missile (SAM) systems. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
19 Nov 19. Leonardo Stands Ready for 1st OCEAN2020 Demo, As Europe’s Most Important Research Project for Maritime Surveillance Ramps Up.
- An operation in the Mediterranean Sea, the first of OCEAN2020’s two defence-focused demonstrations, will be led by Leonardo and the Italian Navy
- The aim of the exercise will be to evaluate how remotely-piloted aircraft can help respond to the challenges of maritime surveillance, as well as assessing European and NATO-level interoperability
- The Leonardo-led OCEAN2020 (Open Cooperation forEuropean mAritime awareNess) team comprises 42 partners from 15 European nations
Leonardo stands ready to embark on the first OCEAN2020 demonstration, bringing together six naval units, nine remotely-piloted systems, five satellites, two ground communications networks, four national co-ordination centres (Maritime Operation Centres – MOCs) and a prototype command centre (EU MOC) located in Brussels. The demonstration is the first live exercise being carried out as part of the European Defence Fund’s pan-European military research project known as OCEAN2020, ‘Open Cooperation for European mAritime awareNess’. Leonardo is leading the project, which aims to evaluate how remotely-piloted aircraft can help respond to the challenges of maritime surveillance.
The demonstration will take place in the Gulf of Taranto on 20th and 21st of November and will be coordinated at sea by the Italian Navy. As a key partner of OCEAN2020, the Navy has provided ships and helicopters for the project and has helped develop the operational scenarios for the demonstrations. These will include the interdiction of a hostile vessel and the interception of an enemy mine-laying ship during an amphibious operation. Throughout the exercise, the overarching objective will be to demonstrate how remotely-piloted air systems (RPAS) can support surveillance and interdiction operations at-sea, providing an integrated picture of the situation for operators. The demonstration will also provide an opportunity to assess integration and interoperability capabilities at a European level as well as in the context of joint operations with NATO.
Leonardo is providing a number of capabilities for the exercise. The Company is responsible for the surveillance, defense and communication systems on board the Italian Navy’s Virginio Fasan and Federico Martinengo frigates, the latter which also hosts a SH-90A helicopter produced by Leonardo. The Company has also provided maritime domain awareness solutions at the Italian Navy Operations Center (COMM), headquarter of the Naval Squad Command (CINCNAV) – in particular, both on board naval units and at the ground control new tactical tables with dedicated functionalities are installed to control the remote piloted systems – and will fly its SW-4 SOLO and AW HERO remotely piloted helicopters during the demo; advanced electronic scanning radar sensors on unmanned aircraft; telecommunications services of Athena Fidus developed by Telespazio and earth observation services provided through E-Geos Seonse platform using the capabilities of Cosmo-SkyMed satellites. Leonardo has also participated in the creation of the prototype European maritime operations centre in Brussels, which will host operations during the exercise.
OCEAN2020 is funded by the European Union (EU Preparatory Action on Defense Research) through grant n. 801697. It is the first and most important project under the European Defence Fund’s initiative to boost pan-European defence. Leonardo leads a team of 42 partners from 15 European countries, comprising industry, research organisations and Ministries of Defence, from Italy, Greece, Spain, Portugal and Lithuania. OCEAN2020’s second demonstration will take place in 2020 in the Baltic Sea. (Source: ASD Network)
19 Nov 19. FLIR Introduces StormCaster Payload Family for its SkyRaider and SkyRanger Unmanned Aerial Systems. Next-Generation Line of UAS Payloads Delivers High-Performance, Multi-Sensor Capabilities for ISR, Event Overwatch, Search and Rescue, and Force Protection Missions. FLIR Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ: FLIR) announced today the FLIR StormCaster™family of Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) payloads for its SkyRanger® R70 and R80D SkyRaider® airframes. The new line launches with two multi-sensor products –StormCaster-T, which delivers continuous zoom and longwave infrared (LWIR) imaging; and StormCaster-L, which provides ultra-low-light imaging, tracking, and mapping.
With two new products, FLIR Systems introduced its StormCaster family of next-generation drone payloads for its SkyRanger R70 and R80D SkyRaider airframes. The new StormCaster-T features a FLIR Boson thermal camera, which delivers sharp, clear images day or night at maximum range for object detection, recognition, and target acquisition. (Photo: Business Wire)
StormCaster represents FLIR Systems’ next generation payload family for the company’s own UAS airframes gained through the acquisition of Aeryon Labs in February 2019. The new line reflects a leap forward in scalable performance, offering a 7X improvement in line-of-sight stabilization, enhanced range of motion, and greater geolocation accuracy – all in a rugged package. Interoperability across the StormCaster family enables users to quickly and easily change modules on the FLIR SkyRanger and SkyRaider UAS systems. The StormCaster line will leverage continuing improvements in aircraft performance, providing small units with the organic capability to conduct increasingly demanding missions such as intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR).
“StormCaster-L and –T are just the beginning of this new line of advanced, high-performance payloads for our small, tactical UAS platforms,” said David Ray, president of the Government and Defense Business Unit at FLIR. “For mission needs ranging from force protection and border security to clandestine operations, FLIR StormCaster will provide heightened situational awareness, bolstered by our aircraft’s onboard, real-time artificial intelligence.
“We will develop more multi-sensor payloads through 2020 that deliver on our promise to offer capabilities at the individual operator level that previously required larger, more expensive UAS,” Ray added.
The StormCaster-T features a FLIR Boson thermal camera to support detection, recognition, identification, and target acquisition day or night, with maximum range and time-on-station. Its continuous zoom lens, with a 75-millimeter maximum focal length, permits long distance ISR while providing clear, actionable imagery. The StormCaster-L ultra-low-light imaging camera offers superior ISR and mapping performance during twilight and nighttime operations. Key features include 4K recorded video and full-color night vision in low-light conditions.
Developed for United States (U.S.) defense and federal agencies, the R80D SkyRaider delivers a range of versatile Group 2 and 3 payload capabilities with the agility and single-operator deployment footprint of a proven Group 1 Vertical Take-Off and Landing (VTOL) aircraft. SkyRaider can carry and deliver multiple payloads up to 4.4 pounds and features an open architecture, plus one of the most powerful embedded AI computing devices available on a sUAS. Similar in capabilities to the R80D but for non-U.S. military customers, the SkyRanger R70 was designed for the most demanding UAS operators within the global defense, security, and public safety markets.
18 Nov 19. Saab doubles down on GlobalEye for Finland. Manufacturer Saab has confirmed it is keeping an offer of two GlobalEye Airborne Early Warning & Control (AEW&C) aircraft on the table for Finland’s HX Fighter Programme (HX-FP), following a revised RfQ calling for ‘improved offers’ from industry released by the European country earlier this month.
The Swedish company also confirmed that the aircraft and its Gripen jet will be evaluated by Finland’s MoD but stopped short of mentioning if the GlobalEye will formally participate in HX flight demonstrations due to be held next year.
Saab is the only one of four industry participants to include an AEW&C solution as part of its HX-FP offer, with the decision to do so mainly based on an idea that superior radar performance can reduce the burden on Finland’s fighter fleets carrying out air surveillance missions.
‘Doing air surveillance with a fighter radar compared to doing it with the GlobalEye is like flying around and looking [at objects of interest] through a straw,’ said Lars Tossman VP and head of radar solutions business unit at Saab.
‘The volume you see with a fighter radar which is on X-band [frequency] with short distances and much narrower [field of detection] is limiting. To use fighters in the most optimised way, they shouldn’t be used to carry out air surveillance all the time, that goes not just for the Gripen but all fighter aircraft.’ (Source: Shephard)
19 Nov 19. LiDARUSA Announces Partnership for Galaxy 950 Gas-Electric UAS. Based in Somerville, Alabama, LiDARUSA has announced a partnership with Innoflight Technology, a manufacturer specializing in UAV systems for surveying, mapping, and inspection. As a result of the partnership, LiDARUSA is offering the Galaxy 950 platform to carry any of its sensors while consistently providing flight times over 30 minutes.
Innoflight and LiDARUSA’s partnership is another step for both companies to offer turn-key solutions focused on quickly and safely acquiring high quality data. Innoflight designed the Galaxy 950 to simplify the flying aspect of remote sensing with UAV. The helicopter includes a parachute, automatic takeoff/landing, and extended visual line of sight capabilities to maximize productive time.
For corridor/electric utility line projects, the Galaxy 950 pairs well with the recently announced CL-90 by Teledyne Optech. As the first integration partner of the new compact LiDAR system, LiDARUSA is offering maximum productivity at UAV flight ceilings while achieving improved canopy penetration and exceptional downward point density.
“LiDARUSA and Innoflight Technology are both committed to customer success, and this partnership provides the whole package for LiDAR mapping solutions with UAV,” said Jeff Fagerman, CEO of LiDARUSA. “Innoflight’s Galaxy 950 offers exceptional performance in safety, flight duration, and ease of use, which is what our customers need for their projects.” (Source: UAS VISION)
18 Nov 19. Thales presents a new solution to protect sensitive sites from malevolent drone usage.
- Thales presents EagleSHIELD, the company’s new integrated drone countermeasures solution to protect and secure sensitive sites and large-scale events in urban areas.
- EagleSHIELD is a multi-sensor solution that detects, identifies, classifies and neutralises rogue drones flying at low altitude at ranges of up to 7km.
- Thales provides a graduated, context-sensitive response to the threat of unmanned systems flying in civil airspace.
Drone traffic in civil airspace has increased significantly in recent years. Since there is always a possibility that these unmanned aircraft could be used for malevolent purposes, effective countermeasures need to be available to protect citizens and critical infrastructure.
To address the growing threat of malevolent drone usage, Thales has developed a unique fully integrated drone countermeasures solution designed to detect, identify, track and neutralise drones flying in civil airspace in order to protect sensitive sites such as airports, sports arenas, critical infrastructure and large-scale events in urban areas.
The Gamekeeper holographic radar, the only radar on the market to provide 360° airspace surveillance coverage, identifies and tracks all types of air platforms flying at low altitude and medium speed within a radius of 7 km. Complementing the radar, infrared and radiofrequency sensors refine the system’s threat identification and classification performance, using sophisticated real-time data fusion techniques to determine the exact type of unmanned aircraft involved.
The solution EagleSHIELD offers operators a clear, simplified view of the situation to protect the airspace in real time, and provides the security services and armed forces with a comprehensive, cohesive vision of the airspace.
Fully integrated with these surveillance capabilities, a variety of drone countermeasures are available to provide a proportional response to the threat depending on the operational context. If the existence of a threat is confirmed, Thales can incorporate a range of technical solutions, including electromagnetic signal jamming, interception by a swarm of drones and directed energy weapons, to neutralise the rogue drone.
Over the last seven years, Thales has invested heavily in the four key digital technologies of artificial intelligence, Big Data, connectivity and cybersecurity. The company is leveraging those investments today to bring citizens the benefits of commercial drones while countering the threats associated with the malevolent use of unmanned aircraft in civil airspace.
“The EagleSHIELD solution from Thales helps customers deal efficiently with drone incursions in the complex environments around critical infrastructure and sensitive sites so they can assess the situation and make the best decisions in a matter of seconds.” Thomas Got, Thales Vice President, integrated airspace protection.
18 Nov 19. Thailand collaborates with EOS and Milrem on UGV project. Thailand’s Defence Technology Institute (DTI) has showcased at the Defense and Security (D&S) 2019 show in Bangkok a combat unmanned ground vehicle (UGV) it has jointly developed with Australian company Electro Optic Systems (EOS) and Estonian firm Milrem Robotics.
The so-called ‘D-Iron UGV’ is a DTI-funded integration of Milrem’s THeMIS UGV fitted with EOS’ R400S-Mk2 Direct Drive-Heavy Duty (D-HD) remote weapon station (RWS). DTI has to date built one prototype D-Iron platform, with trials of the platform scheduled to start with the Royal Thai Army (RTA) soon.
The DTI said the modular platform can be adapted for a range of operations including reconnaissance and patrol, anti-tank, counter-improvised explosive device missions, communications relay, and logistics. It can also be fitted with multi-calibre weapons.
According to the DTI, the D-Iron has a tracked-base platform with a large central bay that can accommodate a wide range of payloads, with a stated capacity of up to 1,200 kg. It has a maximum speed of 25 km/h. The platform, without the R400S-Mk2 RWS fitted, weighs 1,630 kg. The R400S-Mk2 can mount a range of weapons up to and including the M230LF lightweight 30mm autocannon and anti-tank guided missiles. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
11 Nov 19. Gatwick installs Heliguy drone detection technology as part of a permanent solution. As part of detection and response equipment at London Gatwick following drone sightings in December 2018, the airport has permanently installed counter drone technology from UK company Heliguy, as part of a broader, comprehensive solution which protects the airport from a wide range of unmanned aircraft. Heliguy’s solution now forms part of the airport’s overall counter UAV capability to protect itself from rogue attacks and to prevent further disruption. The integrated solution includes Heliguy’s AeroScope solution, an intelligent platform which integrates multiple data sources, and FACE (Fusion Assessment Control Engine) from Operational Solutions Ltd. Permanent installation follows an initial trial period.
Heliguy has installed drone detection technology at a number of UK airports and prisons and works with partners including UTM specialist Altitude Angel, and Operational Solutions. The company participated in Operation Zenith, a demonstration held at Manchester Airport in 2018 to test how drones and traditional aircraft can safely share the same airspace.
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19 Nov 19. TRD shows Orion Counter-Drone System. TRD is a Singapore-based company which was set up in 2011 to initially provide consultancy and market development services for security and defence industries. Since 2015, TRD has been deeply involved with the design, development and supply of standalone and integrated systems aimed at addressing the growing threat of drone proliferation.
Please describe TRD Singapore?
TRD Singapore is a young technology company specialising in counter unmanned aerial systems (C-UAS) and Command, Control, Communications, Computers and Intelligence (C4I) systems.
We produce the C-UAS system known as the Orion Anti-Drone system that has been fielded in many countries. TRD began operations in Singapore in 2011. We have our overseas office in Thailand and Myanmar with representatives in the United States.
What are the company’s most recent and biggest successes?
Our system has been chosen to deploy in one of the most well-known airports in ASEAN. In terms of product and technology, we have developed a state-of-the art fully integrated C-UAS solution consisting of active radar, passive RF, camera, jammer and etc to detect and defeat all kinds of drones.
How does the company position itself in the market vis-a-vis the large global/domestic defence companies?
TRD started from humble beginnings with a four-man team and in three years we grew to a 40 strong work-force and still counting. TRD is also being known as Tiny Red Dot. First, we aim to be the market leader, as well as remain innovative to develop products that are capable of countering latest and emerging drone threats. Second, our solutions are proven, and we maintain strong customer support in our after-sale services. Third, we will maintain focus on the ASEAN market in which we already have good customer base, and we leverage on partnerships to grow our global market.
How has the UAS threat evolved over the years?
The UAS threat has been underestimated by almost everyone. No one would believe small hobbyist drones would be capable of causing the kind of chaos such as the UK Gatwick airport closure. Due to the rapid proliferation of drones worldwide and recent accidents such as the recent drone attack on the oil storage facility in Saudi Arabia, there is no doubt that the UAS threat is a clear present and future danger.
How severe is the UAS threat in the Asia Pacific?
The drone threat is a global problem. Asia Pacific has its fair share, with 37 delayed flights at Singapore’s Changi airport this due to drone intrusion. We need to be prepared and act fast. Any terrorists or even hobbyists can easily fly a drone into the airport or other critical infrastructure, causing damage and disruption.
How does the company approach C-UAS development?
R: We saw drone threat coming five years ago and believe it will be here to stay. TRD began our C-UAS system R&D in 2014, when the market was still in its infancy. TRD was proud to launch the Orion Anti-Drone system in late 2016 and began an exciting journey that has caused much interest in the market. TRD is constantly looking for new ideas and development to continue improving our own products, which is planned through a three-year roadmap. (Source: AMR)
14 Nov 19. Netline “improves precise 3D location of rogue drone threats.” Netline Communications Technologies Ltd. – a developer and manufacturer of high-end electronic warfare and spectrum dominance systems for defense forces and homeland security agencies – is to launch a new DF component for its DroneNet system – at Milipol Paris 2019 and Defense & Security 2019. According to the company: “DroneNet is a comprehensive detecting, identifying, direction finding, locating and jamming solution, designed to prevent unauthorized drones entering secured airspace, such as over strategic facilities, temporary military bases or public appearances of high-profile officials. The new, MIL STD-compliant DF component adds an additional layer to the multi-layer DroneNet solution. Whilst the deployment of a single DF sensor points the location of a detected drone (both its direction and its elevation), the deployment of multiple DF sensors enables the determination of a precise 3D location.
“Upon detection of an unauthorized drone, the DroneNet can jam the communication between the drone and its operator on ISM bands, as well as the drone’s GPS signal. By disabling the drone’s control and telemetry channels, the DroneNet operator eliminates the immediate threat. The DroneNet’s modular design enables future upgrade and insertion of additional capabilities, frequencies and threats to the Data Base.”
At its booth, Netline is also displaying a miniature jamming payload, carried on a racer drone, capable of reaching speeds of up to 300 mph. This provides a precise solution for pin-point jamming of suspicious drones intruding on secured airspace, giving customers the ability to deal with threats surgically, without having to use the entire DroneNet jamming segment.
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18 Nov 19. French Army STAT Unit Tests SkyWall C-AUS System. An evaluation of OpenWorks Engineering, SkyWall net capture systems was recently conducted by the innovative STAT unit from the French Army, at a test range in the south of France. Soldiers were trained to operate both systems, SkyWall Patrol (previously known as SkyWall100) and SkyWall Auto, prior to a test that saw a total of 24 target engagements.
A range of drones were engaged in a wide variety of scenarios, with the French operators achieving captures at new record altitudes and ranges, at day and night. The SkyWall Patrol system was also tested in a range of scenarios, such as deployment from a tactical vehicle.
SkyWall Auto was integrated with existing 2D radar systems to allow autonomous operation. After detecting a drone, the radar transmits the target track to SkyWall Auto which responds by locking onto the drone using the latest computer vision technology. The system automatically scans the sky if the radar does not point the camera precisely at the drone and the operator can then capture the drone at the press of one button.
Chris Down, Managing Director of OpenWorks Engineering commented,
“OpenWorks will continue to drive the development of the best systems in the world and by closely working with the world’s leading military organisations, believe SkyWall net capture systems will remain the most capable available.” (Source: UAS VISION)
16 Nov 19. Australian Army to receive next-generation air defence radars. Defence Minister Linda Reynolds and Defence Industry Minister Melissa Price have announced a multibillion-dollar contract with Canberra-based CEA Technologies to provide the Army’s new short-range ground-based air defence capability. The $137m contract will provide advanced radars as part of the air defence system to protect deployed forces from sophisticated air threats.
Minister Reynolds said the Morrison government is committed to providing the Australian Defence Force with the best capability to defend Australia’s national interests.
“This air defence capability combines world leading Australian radar technology with a highly effective air defence system that will protect our service men and women from future airborne threats,” Minister Reynolds said.
“I congratulate CEA for adapting these radars from those already in service with the Royal Australian Navy, confirming its reputation as an agile, innovative company and a key strategic partner for Defence.”
Minister Price said CEA was already a recognised success story for Australian industry.
“Integration of these radars into existing air defence technology is a significant step in establishing Australian industry as a leading exporter of defence technology,” Minister Price said.
She added, “This contract with CEA will support 45 jobs in Canberra and Adelaide and demonstrates the company’s ongoing success after securing a $90m loan through the Morrison government’s Defence Export Facility.”
The vehicle-mounted radars will be delivered in long- and short-range variants, with the short-range variant to be mounted on the Australian-developed Thales Hawkei vehicle.
CEA’s phased array technologies provide modular and scalable phased array products suitable for use in the maritime and land environments. The CEAFAR active phased array radar provides a multi function digital beam forming (DBF) radar capability able to perform 3D volume search, surface search, fire control support, and target classification in demanding, cluttered and jamming environments.
The CEAMOUNT active phased array illuminator performs target illumination and missile uplink for multiple simultaneous semi-active homing missiles. It can be configured as a mechanically trained face or a fixed multi-face solution. (Source: Defence Connect)
15 Nov 19. Australia orders vehicle-mounted, active phased-array radars for NASAMS air-defence system. Australia’s Department of Defence (DoD) has awarded an AUD137m (USD93m) contract to local company CEA Technologies for the supply of vehicle-mounted, active phased-array tactical radars for the country’s future short-range, ground-based air-defence (GBAD) system.
Defence Minister Linda Reynolds said in a 15 November statement that short- and long-range variants of the radars are set to be delivered “as part of the air-defence system to protect our deployed forces from sophisticated air threats”.
The DoD pointed out that the short-range variant would be mounted on the Australian-produced Hawkei 4×4 light protected vehicle but gave no details regarding numbers, delivery schedules, or any other contractual information.
Second Pass Approval was granted in March 2019 for the acquisition under Project Land 19 Phase 7B of an enhanced version of the National Advanced Surface-to-air Missile System (NASAMS) at an estimated cost of AUD2.5bn (USD1.70bn).
A prototype CEATAC tactical radar, intended to replace the Thales-Raytheon Systems AN/MPQ-64F1 Sentinel high-resolution, 3D fire-control radar, began a 12-month series of risk mitigation activities in September 2018. The radar is mounted on the back of a modified Thales-Hawkei protected light vehicle, and can also be mounted on a trailer.
For inclusion in NASAMS, CEA Technologies is also developing the larger fixed-position or truck-mounted CEAOPS surveillance and cueing radar: an evolution of the company’s active phased-array S-band ground-based multi-mission radar. CEAOPS can be integrated into a wider network and the configuration provides long-range multiband surveillance, identification friend-or-foe, and fire control. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
15 Nov 19. 34 North Drones teams with IDS to offer counter drone system. 34 North Drones has partnered with IDS North America to offer the NO-DRONE radar counter drone system for the civilian market. Previously used in military environments, the NO-DRONE radar detection system is designed to recognize small objects such as incoming mortar, artillery and rocket fire, and to detect, locate and track both fixed wing and rotorcraft UAVs, and small drones. The system provides full 360° coverage, day or night, as well as in adverse weather conditions. The system can be upgraded with an optional “slew to cue” EO/IR turret and an RF detector to enhance drone tracking and identification capabilities.
The NO-DRONE counter drone radar system utilizes a suite of EMC/EMI simulation tools for predictive assessment of possible interference between various radiating and receiving elements around the airport which models any potential interference with and from any existing Navaids and Comms equipment.
The partners have carried out demonstrations and tests at the China Lake Naval Air Weapon Station and internationally and the system has been installed at various airports and prisons. The NO-DRONE system is also available for rental with trained operators in a mobile platform for temporary use at facilities and events across the USA, and later, internationally for drone mitigation where permanent installation is not practical or needed.
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18 Nov 19. At Dubai Airshow this year SteelRock Technologies (sruav.co.uk) is showcasing the expanded NightFighter® family of Counter-UAV effector systems, alongside the highly modular ODIN® counter-drone platform.
Already deployed with Tier 1 security services in multiple jurisdictions, NightFighter mitigates all modes of intrusion by rotary and fixed-wing unmanned aerial vehicles.
Extensively tested for safe deployment in complex radio frequency (RF) environments, the man-portable system combines highly directional RF communications inhibition technology with advanced proprietary software and hardware to bring drone threats to ground rapidly and safely.
Meeting the highest military EMC, environmental and safety standards and capable of deployment in seconds, the ruggedised system features a handheld effector and sighting device, linked to a light, compact backpack containing electronics controlled via a tablet and intuitive visual interface.
NightFighter is now offered in a choice of modular, readily customised configurations to suit a wide range of military, civilian and commercial security applications. NightFighter L (high antenna gain) and NightFighter S (low gain) variants have been demonstrated to be effective against UAVs at ranges in excess of 5km and 2.5km respectively.
SteelRock Technologies confirms that the NightFighter S system has recently attained electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) and environmental certification to UK Defence Standards.
Using the same antenna array system as the NightFighter L and S, NightFighter X offers highly directional effector performance against a broad range of commercial off the shelf drones in a light-weight, one-piece form factor.
Underlining the system’s highly modular architecture, NightFighter O is an all-in-one body-worn solution that provides a 100m radius omni-directional personal protection ‘bubble’ against drone threats. It can also be attached to the NightFighter antenna array for directional deployment.
SteelRock offers the same field-proven RF technology packaged in an OEM module for third party integration in static land-based, hand-carried, vehicle mounted and maritime C-UAV systems.
ODIN is a fully integrated Counter-UAV platform that fuses real-time information from multiple sources – including radar, passive RF detection, optical and thermal imaging camera sensors – to yield a comprehensive signature of potential UAV threats.
Aerial vehicles are accurately tracked by ODIN’s ruggedised PTZ camera platform, allowing an operator to neutralise target drones safely and rapidly using SteelRock Technologies’ advanced RF communications inhibition technology. Designed as a totally modular platform, ODIN can be integrated with a wide range of third-party radar, optical and RF-based detection systems to deliver a total Detect-Identify-Track-Effect C-UAV capability.
21 Nov 19. Rohde & Schwarz enables the development of next generation automotive radar chips with new high-precision test chamber. Rohde & Schwarz has developed the leading-edge R&S ATS1500C antenna test system, a test chamber for high performance radar testing, offering an outstanding indirect far-field testing performance. This innovation allowed Uhnder to mature the technology behind the first 4D digital automotive radar-on-chip with 192 virtual channels. Automotive radar is one of the key technologies that drives progress in the advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) needed for future generations of driverless vehicles. At productronica 2019 in Munich, Rohde & Schwarz provided an early preview of its new solution for testing state-of-the-art, next generation automotive radar sensors. The test system consists of the new, compact R&S ATS1500C automotive radar test chamber for far-field testing, in combination with the R&S AREG100A automotive radar echo generator for precise radar target simulation at various distances. Together, they form a unique and innovative indirect far-field testing solution for reliable and reproducible verification of radar sensors throughout the R&D and validation phase in a user-friendly and extremely compact lab setup. The solution enabled the precise calibration and verification of Uhnder’s new, fully integrated 4D digitally modulated automotive radar-on-chip (RoC).
The R&S ATS1500C features a high accurate compact antenna test range (CATR) reflector, generating a 30 cm diameter quiet zone for testing in the frequency range from 77 81 GHz. Its high-precision 3D tilt-tilt positioner permits testing of premium automotive radars. A carefully designed absorber layout eliminates ghost targets during simulation.
As an innovative startup, Uhnder is launching a unique automotive RoC, introducing new levels of performance and integration with a mission to redefine key technologies for safer ADAS driving. The new technology behind Uhnder’s 4D digitally modulated radar chip offers groundbreaking performance by integrating 192 virtual channels – a major leap from the 8 to 24 virtual channels used in today’s standard radars. A higher number of detections per frame makes it possible to track and classify objects with a processing power of more than 20 TeraOPS, despite using less than 8 watts of power. The Uhnder RoC also pioneers high contrast resolution (HCR) technology, which provides significantly improved range and angular resolution and makes it possible to separate small radar reflectors from large reflectors in proximity. This permits a more accurate and safe reaction time than with current radar chip technology and paves the way for advanced ADAS functions for today’s vehicles and future driverless vehicles.
Holger Gryska, Market Segment Manager Automotive Radar at Rohde & Schwarz, says: “The joint effort with Uhnder shows how T&M expertise and industry-leading experience can generate true innovation. Both companies are known to be pioneers that excel in their fields, further advancing technologies on the road towards fully autonomous driving.”
Ralf Reuter, Fellow and Senior Director of Customer and Applications Engineering at Uhnder, says, “Rohde & Schwarz was our partner of choice for developing this new technology. Our 4D digitally modulated RoC has special testing requirements and having a partner with the necessary expertise, precision and agility was vital for us. We were able to meet and even surpass our performance targets for our product and take the next step towards the truly driverless future.”
From January 7 to 10, 2020, Rohde & Schwarz and Uhnder will jointly showcase the R&S ATS1500C test solution at CES 2020 in Las Vegas. The companies’ experts will offer private live demonstrations. For more information about requesting a slot, visit: www.rohde-schwarz.com/automotive-radar/test
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