Digital Battlespace

Rafael highlights potential of ISR sensors to enhance peacekeeping operations

27th May 2020 - 15:00 GMT | by Andrew White in London

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Peacekeeping forces would benefit from greater use of airborne sensors to meet their ISR requirements, according to Israel-based Rafael Advanced Defense Systems.

Intelligence is the ‘most important capability’ for armed forces conducting peacekeeping support operations (PSOs) today, explained Gideon Weiss, Rafael VP for business development, marketing and strategy in the Air and C4ISR Systems Division.

He was speaking on 26 May during a live webinar on “Tactical ISR Operations and Special Missions in the Modern Battlefield”. 

Describing a series of mission sets associated with PSOs including mapping and modelling; border monitoring; force protection; persistence surveillance; and disaster relief, Weiss discussed how Rafael’s targeting pods could be integrated on manned or unmanned platforms.

Referring to Rafael products in this area which include the MicroLite, MIST-G and Reccelite, Weiss explained how ground forces must be supported with ‘superb surveillance in real-time’.

Such technology, he continued, reduces reliance upon satellites and provides an organic ISR capability to the force which is ‘available in a very short period of time from preparation to execution’.

Weiss also highlighted a series of emerging demand signals from armed forces around the world, including single airborne sensors capable of conducting multiple mission sets such as wide-area persistent surveillance (WAPS), wide-area photography, investigation and designation.

In addition, he identified the potential of passive 3D imaging to ‘revolutionise imagery for combat [forces] and PSOs’.

Rafael includes the Orbiter 4 UAV in its portfolio, having completed the acquisition of fellow Israeli company Aeronautics Group last September. Orbiter 4 is capable of carrying the Microlite ISR Sensor System to support WAPS operations.

According to Weiss, the Class-II UAV is capable of covering up to 6km2 at an operating altitude of 8,000ft above ground level although this could be reduced as low as 4km2 should the UAV be forced to operate at just 6,000ft above ground level.

‘A single sensor on the UAV can track an entire area as well as the specific movements [of targets of interest] on the ground,’ Weiss said. 

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