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17 Nov 16. TALONS raised aloft in USN testing. Key Points:
• TALONS is a low-cost, elevated sensor mast based on a fully automated parafoil system
• DARPA is now transitioning TALONS to the USN
The US Navy (USN) is planning further at-sea testing of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency’s (DARPA’s) Towed Airborne Lift of Naval Systems (TALONS) concept, following successful shipborne trials from the prototype Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Continuous Trail Unmanned Vessel (ACTUV) Sea Hunter .
Based on a fully automated parafoil system, TALONS is a low-cost, elevated sensor mast designed to extend maritime vessels’ long-distance communications and improve their domain awareness. Towed behind surface platforms, the system elevates intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance (ISR), and communications payloads of up to 150 lb to altitudes of 500-1,500 ft, many times higher than current ships’ masts.
The demonstration took place over two days, with 90 minutes of flight each day. The TALONS prototype started out from its ‘nest’ on the back of Sea Hunter, subsequently expanding its parachute and ascending to an altitude of 1,000 ft where it tested its onboard sensors and communications equipment. Once the test was complete, the system reeled itself in back to the ‘nest’. The entire process took place as the ACTUV vehicle manoeuvred at operationally realistic speeds.
While aloft, TALONS “demonstrated significant improvements to the range of the sensors and radios it carried, compared to mounting them directly on a surface vessel,” according to DARPA. For example, TALONS’ surface-track radar extended its range by 500% compared to its range at sea level, while its electro-optical/infrared (EO/IR) scanner doubled its observed discrimination range. The TALONS team also integrated a commercial hand-held omnidirectional radio; its range more than tripled.
The demonstration of the TALONS payload on the ACTUV prototype came together in a compressed time window – less than 90 days from the decision to proceed to the actual demonstration. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
15 Nov 16. Elbit Systems Presents Groundeye™. A New Revolutionary Line of Advanced EO Ground Surveillance Systems For Wide-Area Focused and Persistent Intelligence Gathering. The line of systems provides a unique, overall situational awareness of “on-the-ground” data and conditions, and enables a large number of users to receive real time, high-resolution imagery and even go “back-in-time” for border protection, facilities and tactical infrastructure security, counter-terrorism and other purposes.
Elbit Systems presents GroundEye, an innovative line of systems for ground-based wide-area, focused and persistent surveillance at the Israel HLS & Cyber Conference, taking place this week in Tel Aviv. The GroundEye line comprises advanced systems and capabilities in the field of imagery intelligence gathering, which together provide a complete picture and large Field of View (FOV), to a large number of users, in both real time and back-in-time, for forensic debriefing and in high-resolution.
GroundEye was developed specifically to address requirements raised by security and law enforcement agencies to improve operational responses against terrorism and homeland security threats such as border protection, facility security-related events, sporting events and mass public shootings.
Readily operable by one or more persons, the GroundEye surveillance system can be used to zoom into multiple target areas of interest, while offering easy maneuverability between different areas according to operational requirements, and facilitating continuous reception of data and video coverage as well as high-quality image resolution in all areas of surveillance.
When deployed, the system provides ground force commanders important insights on events occ