World Defense Show 2024: Lacroix displays improved soft-kill vehicle protection system in Riyadh
Lacroix has displayed an improved version of its S-KAPS at World Defense Show (WDS) 2023 in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. The upgraded version has integrated the system with a Nimr Ajban vehicle, a Perisight from Bertin Technologies and new design features that have taken it beyond its primary use as a soft-kill system.
The company described the system as open and scalable as it could connect to a vehicle’s battle management system and focus on threat detection, situational analysis and protection reaction.
The system can provide multi-band masking solutions such as UV, visible, infra-red and millimeter, modern decoy concepts, jamming and disengagement capabilities. It has been designed with a range of sensors including laser, acoustic and infra-red to detect and identify varied threats such as missiles, UAVs and snipers.
If the vehicle has been equipped with a Remote Weapon Station then S-KAPS can provide slew-to-cue capability, a substantial move beyond the soft-kill of its name, and the company noted that “collaborative protection can be taken into account in the future”.
The system on display at WDS this year has combined Galix smoke grenade launchers, Pilar acoustic detection by Metravib and LED50 laser warning sensors by Saab Grintek.
For the first time, it has been shown integrated with Perisight, the scalable optronic solution from Bertin Technologies which can provide 360° situational awareness during day and night.
A Bertin spokesperson noted that system on display consisted of four long-wave, infra-red thermal cameras mounted on the front, rear and both sides, which can operate in thermal white light or black light to provide a more conventional image.
The Perisight system has been in service on the French Army’s PTA (Poseur de Travures Automoteur) Modular Assault Bridges which were introduced in 2009 to meet the army’s SPRAT (Système de Pose Rapide de Travure) requirement. Eight Perisights have been installed on each vehicle in this case.
Bertin Perisght sensors have been mounted on the rear, sides and front, as seen here in the latter case below the turret and under the laser rangefinder. (Photo: Author)
The Perisight displayed as part of S-KAPS at WDS was the light version which can provide infra-red sensing.
Eric Galvani, manager of vehicle protection division at Lacroix, told Shephard the current S-KAPS provided 360° laser warning protection and, while the current system used smoke and other actions for protection, in the future it could use jamming or decoys.
“It can operate in automatic, semi-automatic and manual mode, but importantly the type of protection provides defence against three-mode weapons including the use of millimetre wave,” Galvai said.
“It is a very open architecture. We can add sensors and we are looking to add new sensors. It is a proven system which has been in service on [Saudi Arabian] General Dynamics Land Systems’ LAV 700 vehicles since 2016.
“We are also working with the French [procurement agency] DGA in looking to integrate systems onto French vehicles,” he added.
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