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Paris Air Show: Thales tests counter-UAS solution

20th June 2017 - 11:30 by Beth Maundrill in Paris

Paris Air Show: Thales tests counter-UAS solution

Thales has recently tested its counter-UAS solution and successfully used its jammer to neutralise small unmanned vehicles, the company confirmed during the Paris Air Show.

The demonstration took place in April 2017 at a test area in Brittany, previously an air defence base.

The French solution provider uses various sensors, radar technologies and goniometry to detect and remove UAS from the air.

‘The solution has been proven for micro and mini UAVs,’ said Michel Dechanet, product manager at Thales Air Systems, ‘UAVs that are less than 25kg is the main challenge we are dealing with [and] we are ready to deliver this solution.'

During the test the company used its Squire sensor, a man-portable medium-range ground surveillance radar that can detect and classify moving targets, while other tests were carried out using different sensors. The solution also has a day camera and an IR camera which allows for UAVs detected to be verified by an operator and also provides automatic threat evaluation..

The system has a detection range of up to 4km for micro-UAVs and with the use of the ground surveillance radar platforms can be detected at altitudes of up to 3,000ft.

The company can offer both hard-kill and soft-kill neutralisation solutions depending on the operational concepts. Dechanet highlighted the Lightweight Multirole Missile (LMM) and the Rapidfire airburst munition, both of which the company has tested as part of its counter-UAS solution.

‘We see the solution as a gap filler for very short range systems and providing additional capabilities that are not available on the ground-based air-defence system,’ he said.

The company is also looking at how best to integrate UAS into air traffic management. Earlier in 2017 the company announced the launch of ECOsystem UTM, a solution for Unmanned Aerial System Traffic Management (UTM), built with technology from partner Unifly.

‘We are looking at the best way to facilitate the introduction of UAVs into the airspace and to take care of surveillance and safety,’ Dechanet said, ‘The first phase of course is the management of all the data.’

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