News from Eurosatory

SOLAR Industries and EURENCO Announce Strategic Partnership Agreement for Artillery Ammunition

SOLAR Industries and EURENCO Announce Strategic Partnership Agreement for Artillery Ammunition

SOLAR Industries, India’s largest manufacturer of explosives and initiating systems, and EURENCO, the European leader in energetic materials, announced a strategic partnership agreement related to the supply of Explosives, Propellants, Transfer of Technology projects and to a common offer for the Bi-Modular Charge System (BMCS) project in India. The announcement was made during the EUROSATORY 2018 exhibition in Paris-Villepinte, from June 11-15.

SOLAR and EURENCO signed a preliminary Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) as far back as July 2016 to evaluate various cooperation options, including the BMCS project. The two companies confirm with this strategic partnership their strong will to reinforce their cooperation to address the Indian Army’s needs and future developments including export options. EURENCO is ready to collaborate with SOLAR for the supply of Propellants, Bombs, Ammunition filling and Modular Charges technologies under the ‘Make in India’ policy for the private sector. SOLAR is willing to build dedicated infrastructure facilities with the technical assistance of EURENCO on its explosive and propellant facilities in Nagpur, India. The new facility would include Propellant Plants, one of the key components of Modular Charges, Bombs and Ammunition filling capabilities.

CEO of EURENCO, Dominique Guillet declared that “This partnership agreement is at the heart of our strategy in India which is today one of the key markets that we aim for as part of our global export policy in Asia”.

CEO SOLAR Industries, Manish Nuwal said, “We have built a strong relationship with EURENCO and are working on a collaborative approach to set up infrastructure facilities under the ‘Make in India’ programme of the government of India to fulfil the needs of the Indian Army.”

SOLAR Industries India Ltd. is the largest exporter and manufacturer of explosives and initiating systems in India with a global footprint with plants at 17 locations in India and at four locations abroad. On the other hand, EURENCO is the European leader in Energetic Materials with a full range of Propellants, Explosives, Combustible items and additives for strategic markets such as Defence & Security, Space, Oil & Gas, Fuel Additives.


Thales’ New Thermal Imager Provides Unparalleled Tactical Superiority

Representing the new generation of four-in-one thermal imaging devices for dismounted soldiers, the Sophie Ultima combines tactical binoculars, an infrared target locator, a daytime laser range finder and a teleconverter into a single piece of equipment, significantly reducing size and weight while delivering even higher performance. The new imaging device weighs only 2.5 kg and meets the need to progressively reduce the weight of the equipment deployed by the armed forces.

Making target identification possible over long distances, the Sophia Ultima device provides significant tactical advantages at night. Sophie Ultima can also provide tactical advantages in daytime operations. It combines a high-performance glass day channel with the detection capabilities of infrared imaging. This device can detect body heat signatures at ranges exceeding 1 km. This kind of technology can allow soldiers to de-camouflage potential enemy soldiers who would otherwise be invisible to the naked eye.

Thales proposes a thermal imager with expanded functionality and augmented performance with the Sophie Ultima. Not only does this enable the device to deliver the benefits of collaborative combat like augmented reality, it also helps soldiers in detecting threats sooner which in turn allows for faster engagement. As a result, strikes are safer, faster, and more precise.

Sophie Ultima is a fully modular system that accounts for future operational requirements and technologies. It does this by employing the new ‘eXtension’ concept with a plethora of plug-and-play accessories for future upgrades.

“The armed forces rely on Thales for its expertise in the connectivity, big data, artificial intelligence and cybersecurity technologies that are key to their digital transformation. With Sophie Ultima, the soldier of the future will master the art of collaborative combat day and night,” said Vice President, Optronics, Thales, Jean-Pascal Arrou-Vignod.

Thanks to its common user interfaces and shared maintenance solutions, the Sophie Ultima offers a significantly reduced instruction, training, and support footprint. It also ensures that suitable equipment is available for specific tasks and missions. This new generation of imaging devices will meet the operational needs of all the units, from squadron leaders to the Special Forces. Thales has sold 15,000 Sophie thermal imagers in 55 countries in the recent years.


EURENCO at the Forefront of Modular Charges Capabilities

In the early Nineties, EURENCO created the French modular charges. Since 2007 and the commissioning of the first fully integrated production line in Bergerac, EURENCO designs, develops and manufactures complete bi-modular charge systems with a proven track record of technical successes. Designed to enhance the performances of modern artillery, Modular Charges not only improve range and firing rate without residue but also save logistics costs. EURENCO’s Modular Charges are compatible with any 155mm gun (52, 45 or 39 calibre) such as the Bofors FH-77, Samsung K9 and Nexter CAESAR.

As of now EURENCO offers complete solutions for bi-modular charges including propellants (Single and Multibase), combustible cases, loading, assembling and packing. EURENCO now manufactures more than 450,000 modular charges per year. As part of its global export policy, EURENCO also aims to expand on export strategic markets such as South-East Asia.

With more than 20 years of experience in Modular Charges technologies, EURENCO launched in October 2017 in its Bergerac (France) facility a second production line. With fully robotized capabilities, this second production line enables higher capacity and process capability to support the growth of export sales. EURENCO has now the largest and most modern production capacity in Europe for Modular Charges


HENSOLDT to Deliver IFF Testers to French Armed Forces

HENSOLDT, the leading independent sensor solutions house, will deliver its test equipment used to ensure the correct performance of identification systems onboard aircraft and ships to the French Ministry for the armed forces.

The contract worth several million euros covers the delivery of 130 BTI1000I IFF testers (IFF = Identification-Friend-or-Foe) compatible with the military and civilian Mark XIIAS standard which are essential to make sure that IFF systems are working correctly before a military aircraft or ship is going on a mission. IFF systems, so-called secondary surveillance radars (SSR), precisely identify ships and aircraft by automatically sending interrogation signals which are answered by so-called transponders on-board friendly aircraft or ships. Thus, IFF enables field commanders to quickly distinguish friendly from hostile forces and therefore avoid friendly fire.

HENSOLDT’s BTI1000I IFF testers had been qualified by DGA (the French Defence Procurement Agency) in 2017. End of 2017 the testers gave proof of their capabilities during the US Army’s ‘Bold Quest’ interoperability exercises in Savannah/ Georgia. They are under contract by several platform integrator companies and in service with the armed forces of Germany, Norway, Denmark and Australia.

HENSOLDT supplies customers all over the world with IFF equipment. Based on the experience of predecessor companies like Matra, Airbus and Siemens, the company is under contract to upgrade German, French, US and other armed forces’ platforms with IFF systems using the latest ‘Mode 5’ standard. It has already delivered IFF systems – including crypto devices – to ground and naval platforms of 42 NATO and NATO-allied nations. In France, the company’s equipment is deployed on the ‘Charles de Gaulle’ aircraft carrier, the Rafale and Mirage 2000 combat aircraft, the NH90 helicopters and several air defence platforms. In Germany, the company has established the air traffic control/ IFF network of the German Air Force. In total, HENSOLDT has about 450 IFF interrogator and transponder systems under contract for more than 80 platform types and provided crypto devices in more than 33 countries.


French Army Make Operational Use of SkyStart 180, Discloses RT LTA

The Israeli-based aerostat company RT LTA Systems Ltd. participated at Eurosatory 2018, and presented its SkyStar family of aerostats, which includes the Skystar 110, SkyStar 180 and SkyStar 330. During the exhibition in Paris, the company discloses its current leasing agreement with the French army.

CEO, RT, Rami Shmueli said, “The SkyStar 180 aerostat system is currently in operational use by the French Army, under a leasing agreement. We look at the French Army and the French nation, which are very important for us, as one of the leading forces in the world, and we are honoured to provide our leading SkyStar 180 aerostat system to support their mission. I can already say that the feedback we are getting from them is positive”.

The SkyStar aerostats are a self-contained, versatile, and easily transportable tactical systems, ideal for defence, border security, HLS and public safety missions. Offering availability of over 85 per cent in any given area, the SkyStar systems already accumulated more than 1,500,000 million operational hours worldwide.

The SkyStar 180 is a small-sized mobile aerostat, designed for tactical mid-range surveillance and public safety, as well as for police and military applications. Based on a towable trailer, the system has a stabilised day/ night electro-optical payload suspended from a helium-filled aerostat, tethered to a ground system. It operates continuously at wind velocity of up to 40 knots, and can lift a payload of up to 20kg, providing surveillance coverage from an altitude of up to 1,000 ft. for up to 72 hours, after which it is brought down for a 20-minute helium refill. Only two people are required to fully maintain the system. SkyStar 180 is Ideal for defence, security, border control and public safety missions.


Nammo Introduces Ramjet Powered 155 mm Artillery Shells with 100km+ Range

Nammo, on June 12, introduced a new concept for artillery ammunition that will enable any country with a modern 155 mm artillery system to launch precision strikes against targets more than 100 km away.

“This could be a game-changer for artillery. With the exception of a small number of precision guided shells with 50-60 km range, most artillery systems still fire across the same distances as they did when the M109 was introduced more than 50 years ago. This could completely change that,” said VP, Large Caliber Ammunitions unit, Nammo, Thomas Danbolt.

Nammo’s new design is built around a compact solid fuel ramjet which is kick-started by launching it from a cannon and is a collaborative programme between ammunition and rocket engineers in Nammo.

“We have been building rocket motors for about 60 years and have specialised in small and powerful motors for air-to-air missiles, such as Sidewinder, IRIS-T and AMRAAM. Some years ago, we began looking at using air breathing motors to help extend their range, but we quickly saw the massive impact this could have if we fitted it to an artillery shell,” said VP, Technology, Nammo’s business unit for Aerospace Propulsion, Erland Ørbekk.

Test firing of the new projectile is planned to commence in 2019-2020, while the new artillery ammunition concept will likely be operational around 2023-2024.


KNDS Presents the European Main Battle Tank (EMBT)

European leader in land defence, KNDS exhibits its first joint product, the European Main Battle Tank (EMBT), less than three years after being created around KMW and Nexter.

The hull, engine and entire chassis comes from the Leopard 2 A7 and were modified to host the compact and light turret with automatic loading from the Leclerc. Composed of proven and tested technologies, the EMBT is a short-term response to the operational need of the market for high-intensity battle tanks.

By assembling a chassis, which is certified to MLC70, and a light turret operated by only two crew members instead of 3, the EMBT brings together the best in the battle tank state-of-the-art, with an exceptional growth potential which allows to integrate many evolutions. The demonstrator presented on the booth illustrated the progress of the integration of KNDS, whose combined skills make it the legitimate and essential industrial actor of the two Franco-German future programs for the tank (MGCS) and artillery (CIFS).

KMW and Nexter’s ranges and know-how were also showcased on the KNDS stand through the products and systems of each of the two brands, which together constitute a broad and almost complete offering in the land sector


HENSOLDT Presents New Ground-Based TRML-4D Air Defence Radar

The sensor solutions provider HENSOLDT showcased its newly developed TRML-4D radar system for ground-based air defence for the first time. The 3D multifunctional radar, which belongs to the TRS-4D radar family tried and tested in operations on numerous occasions, ensures rapid response detection and tracking of approximately 1,500 targets in a radius of up to 250 km and at an altitude of up to 30 km.

TRML-4D uses the latest AESA radar technology (AESA = Active Electronically Scanned Array), which enables the acquisition of targets after just one rotation of the antenna, thus improving the response time and hit probability even in a complex environment with a high target density and involving highly agile and asymmetric threats. Thanks to the precise coordination of all the antenna elements in the C band (NATO G band) and special signal processing modes, the radar can provide extremely exact information on the targets, thus guaranteeing early and precise weapon assignment. An integrated secondary radar system for identifying friend or foe (IFF) prevents friendly fire. The high performance of the radar is largely due to the great number of transmit/ receive (T/ R) modules in the antenna, which are made from special RF-capable materials. HENSOLDT is the pioneer of this technology in Europe.

The system can be transported by air in an A400M or C130 transport aircraft, but can also be transported by rail. One customer has already placed an order for 10 systems. Series production takes place at HENSOLDT’s Ulm site.


MBDA’s Licorne VSHORAD System Equipped with Anti-Drone Capability

MBDA’s Licorne pocket air defence command and control (C2) system has become the first fielded C2 to integrate anti-drone and traditional air defence capabilities.

Licorne is a very lightweight Command and control (C2) solution with the ability to co-ordinate very short range air defence (VSHORAD) systems, such as those of the Mistral family. A highly mobile C2, it is derived from the I-MCP and PCP systems family currently in use with armed forces in export markets, using the same software components, architecture and human machine interfaces (HMI).

In order to deliver an effective response to the emergence of asymmetric threats, and particularly mini-drone attacks on deployed ground-to-air assets or other military assets inside the protected zone, Licorne can now also deploy anti-drone measures, and co-ordinate them with the traditional air defence assets.

To achieve this, MBDA has supplemented its C2 with a set of data link detectors and jammers originally developed to provide security for events or prisons, which have been adapted to military needs. For detection, Licorne uses a mobile radio frequency detection unit produced by Cerbair to intercept mini-drone data link transmissions. Once the threat has been detected and located, Licorne allows operators to activate countermeasures using a network of field-deployed jammers developed by KEAS.

Licorne’s scalable architecture is designed to enable the system to provide a first level of co-ordination for the VSHORAD systems used by rapid reaction forces, airborne units and amphibious units. Licorne provides surveillance, detection and identification functions with a high level of connectivity. It can be used in association with passive infrared 360 degree surveillance sensors, lightweight radars or ESM and acoustic sensors. Pocket C2 Licorne provides all the functions expected of a C2, including multisensor data fusion; real-time ranging; shared tactical position calculation; and even uploading battery sensor images to upper command levels using standard NATO military data link protocols such as JREAP-C.


Nexter Showcases Armed Variant of OPTIO

Nexter, a company of KNDS, presents its strategy for robots. On the basis of the experience acquired by its subsidiary, Nexter Robotics, through civil and military applications in the design of robotic platforms and systems, and thanks to its expertise in both architecture and integration of weapons, including teleoperated, on a wide variety of vehicles, Nexter expands its activity in the field of operational applications of robotics.

Thus, Nexter presented OPTIO, its new range of versatile tactical robots designed to carry out various missions without exposing dismounted personnel: opening of routes, reconnaissance and observation, logistics or fire support. In parallel with OPTIO, the NERVA range of mini-robots continues to expand through the variety of its mission modules.

Nexter’s efforts are focused on increasing the operational relevance of these robotic systems by pursuing complementary areas of development as versatility and modularity to equip these robotic systems with adaptability that will make the forces more responsive to evolving threats, Integration of robots and drones into combat vehicles and development of supervised autonomy to allow the operator to focus on the core of the tactical mission.

Strategy Directorn Nexter, Frédéric Bouty underlined, “Nexter Group’s pride in increasing its robotics offering and extending its partnerships to a dynamic European player in this innovative sector for the benefit of the armed forces”.

On the occasion of Eurosatory, Nexter exposes an armed variant of the OPTIO range. Combining Milrem’s ‘THeMIS’ remote control platform and a Nexter remote-controlled 20mm turret. OPTIO-X20 will help preserve the lives of soldiers in high-intensity combat or when used in a hostile environment and provide the combat group with means of observation and fire support operated remotely under the control of the human operator.

Thanks to Nexter’s development of innovative intelligent features on the mobility side, OPTIO-X20 allows the operator to focus on its mission rather than navigation.


Nexter Munitions and EURENCO Working Conjointly for 120mm Tank ammunition

Nexter Munitions, the ammunition subsidiary of Nexter, and EURENCO, the European leader in energetic materials, are both part of the French excellence team regarding medium and large calibre ammunition. Together, Nexter Munitions and EURENCO have a longstanding partnership on strategic products such as the modular charges for artillery systems (155mm/ 52 Cal. CAESAR), or combustible cartridges and propellants for 120mm High Explosive (HE) and Armour Piercing Fin Stabilized Discarding Sabot (APFSDS) tank ammunition (LECLERC MBT).

In 2018, both companies decided to pursue this fruitful partnership and signed a contract for the supply over the next five years by EURENCO of more than 100,000 combustible cartridges REACH compliant and more than 300 tonnes of high performance propellant for Nexter Munitions 120mm HE and APFSDS tank ammunition for export market.

This success was made possible thanks to EURENCO and Nexter teams’ involvement to complete products development and qualification and to upgrade and optimise the production lines of both combustible cartridges and large calibre propellants to guarantee reliable and high-quality standard for high volume serial production.


Nexter and French MoD to Jointly Promote SME Growth

Minister of defence, France, Florence Parly and Chief Executive Officer, Nexter, Stéphane Mayer have signed a new bilateral agreement as part of the SME Action Plan to promote SME growth through reciprocal commitments between the ministry of defence and defence Industrial Prime Contractors (IPC).

As a major land defence IPC at the heart of the SCORPION programme, Nexter Group attaches particular importance to the vitality and durability of an essential fabric of efficient and innovative SMEs to constitute a Defence Technological and Industrial Base (DTIB). In continuation of the first agreement signed with the ministry of the defence in June 2013, the two signatories undertake to strengthen their joint approach around four axes:

Improve the access of SMEs to defence markets: With more than 80 per cent of its supplier panel residing in France, 50 per cent of which is made up of SMEs, Nexter commits annually to give them visibility on its markets and also, in partnership with the armed forces, to present them with feedback on the operation or maintenance of weapon systems in OPEX use,

Promoting equitable and partnership-based relationships: Consistent with the Responsible Supplier Relations Charter, of which Nexter has been labelled since 2013, the Group undertakes, in the context of its contracts with the ministry of defence, to adopt contractual clauses adapted to SMEs like 30-day payment terms,

Developing and sustaining the DTIB by relying on SMEs: The development of regular exchanges with the French Defence Procurement Agency (DGA) on strategic SMEs makes it possible to promote technological partnerships in the context of the upstream studies conducted by Nexter, but also through meetings organised by the DGA,

Contribute to the international development of SMEs: The Nexter group provides promotional devices, especially at exhibitions such as Eurosatory – making models available, valuing their products on its equipment, valuing partnerships, etc.

In order to make the improvement of SMEs’ access to defence markets more concrete and measurable, Nexter and the ministry of the armies are committed to putting in place monitoring tools and highlighting the best practices identified.


Nexter Asserts its Position as a Global Land Defence Player in the Digital World

Nexter asserted its position as a global land defence player in the digital world by presenting advanced digital solutions and systems on this edition of Eurosatory.

Through the TITUS mission orchestration, the group demonstrates all its expertise to combine the best of technology in the field of vetronics, connected vehicles (continuity of combat mounted/ dismounted), onboard simulation, robotics and command systems, for greater operational efficiency.

Mastering the entire spectrum of the land sector gives Nexter the ability to identify a large part of the field of action in modern hybrid conflicts (mixed use of autonomous platforms and manned devices) and to better respond to asymmetric threats. Thanks to its integrating architect skills, the group offers operators increased operational capacities, on the ground with a Nerva robot (IED detection, suspicious object), upwards with a captive drone (charging autonomy, cyber protection) and further more with an autonomous drone. The operator, equipped with a connected headset and a tablet, teleoperates weapons systems (medium-sized cupola) from inside or outside of the combat vehicle. The reported information is available for the digitised command post, allowing faster decision-making and keeping pace with the manoeuvre.

With the future integration of the OPTIO robotic system to the TITUS mission orchestration, Nexter group will have taken a new step towards the development of hybrid operating systems in which the supervised autonomy of drones and satellite robots provides the means (sensors and effectors) of an even higher operational efficiency to the humans.


Nexter’s KATANA Guided Shell will be the Gunners’ Ammunition of the Future

Nexter, through its Ammunition Business Unit (Nexter Munitions, Mecar and Simmel Difesa), is one of European’s leaders in the field of ammunition. Through an ambitious R&D policy, lasting several years, the group now offers one of the most comprehensive ranges of highly technological ammunition.

The KATANA ammunition can be fired from all 52 calibre artillery systems, while retaining the traditional artillery qualities of continuous fire, all-weather capability, high cost/ efficiency ratio. Thanks to its specific architecture, KATANA can be used for close support and will treat all types of targets thanks to its multi-mode rocket, which is programmable to operate by proximity, impact, or with delay by allowing the penetration of the military payload.

With a maximum range between 30 km for the first generation and 60 km for the next, KATANA will strike targets with pinpoint precision. The projectile’s guidance is ensured by a hybridisation between a GNSS signal receiver and an inertial measurement unit. In the future, metre scale precision will be accessible through the addition of an optional semi-active laser distance gauge.

Thus, KATANA shells will offer the best performance in range, accuracy and terminal effect for existing 155 mm ammunition. With KATANA munitions, Nexter has a full range of 155 mm projectiles, compatible with current and future artillery systems.


MBDA and Milrem Robotics to Co-Develop Unmanned Anti-Tank Ground Vehicle

The leading European missile systems designer and producer MBDA and unmanned vehicles manufacturer Milrem Robotics will begin developing the world’s first unmanned ground vehicle (UGV) specially designed for anti-tank purposes.

The joint project will feature the IMPACT (Integrated MMP Precision Attack Combat Turret) system from MBDA that will be integrated onto the THeMIS unmanned ground vehicle by Milrem Robotics.

The system will be remotely operated and is in line with the system developers’ main aim of exchanging humans on the battlefield for much more capable robots.

“One of the challenges in urban warfare is keeping anti-tank infantry hidden from the enemy’s surveillance equipment that can very easily detect soldier’s heat signature. The aim of our joint integration project is developing a system that has a low heat signature and most importantly – will keep infantry in a safe distance,” explained Military Advisor, Milrem Robotics, Brig Gen Alar Laneman (retd).

“MMP, the world’s only 5th Generation anti-tank guided weapon, now in service within the French armed forces, has been developed for both mounted and dismounted applications and is suitable for unmanned ground vehicle (UGV). With its 4km+ range and its two firing modes – lock on before launch (LOBL) and lock on after launch (LOAL) – the MMP gives to THeMIS UGV an unmatched capability to engage a target beyond line of sight. MMP allows, within remote operation, to engage very discreetly battlefield targets at ranges greater than the enemies counter fire, from behind cover and within structures in fighting in built-up areas. The MMP Firing installation deployed on UGV also provides an ISTAR (Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition, & Reconnaissance) capability and, through direct integration with a C4I network, delivers battlefield intelligence out beyond the platoon”, added Military Advisor, MBDA, Colonel Francis Bordachar (retd).


EURENCO Showcases Future Tech

Energetic material manufacturer EURENCO showcased three vital innovations for future products and processes. EURENCO is looking for long-term solutions and is actually working on technologies for the next decade: customised 3D-printing solutions. This is in an effort to face future challenges that come with rapid advancement of technology.

This new 3D-printing technology utilizes Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF) and 3D Solvent Cast based on EURENCO’s know-how in Nitrofilm technology, which allows for rapid prototyping and small series capacity for energetic materials.

It also enables enhanced or moderated performances for the products (new designs, combustion rate, temperature behaviour, recycling, etc.). This new fabrication processes could possibly be used for the production of propellants, combustible items, and in the long term, even explosives.

EURENCO is also working on new explosive solutions and high performance energetics that will lead to the development of next generation ammunition and bombs that are lighter but stronger. The advantages of these new solutions include enhanced performances, lighter logistical footprint, and smaller and lighter ammunition designs. These can also enable new transportation vector (Drones, etc.) and in the end, new defence capabilities for the armed forces.

Finally, EURENCO also presented its green propellant technologies at its booth. “Today, our small calibre propellants are REACh – compliant, but we want to go even beyond REACh towards ‘green’ propellants.”

Stabilisers, used today in small calibre propellants, produce toxic by-products throughout their life cycle. In order to produce safer products, our R&D department has identified six ‘green equivalents’ to these stabilisers: from curcumin to alpha-ionone (derived from violette).

These ‘green’ stabilisers are more environmental-friendly and will reduce exposure to harmful substances for workers and users. They also represent better performances as well as improved chemical and ballistic stabilities. As the European Leader of Energetic Materials, EURENCO has a duty to work on new technologies to support its customers and more globally the armed forces in their future challenges.


Scorpion Programmes’ Acoustic Location System

France positions itself at the forefront of collaborative defence with its new Scorpion Programme. METRAVIB, the inventor of acoustic gunshot detection and supplier of acoustic localisation systems for ‘Griffon’ VBMR (multi-role armoured vehicles) and ‘Jaguar’ EBRC (armoured reconnaissance and combat vehicles), fits perfectly into this new operational approach, since it offers solutions to exploit, fuse and share data from theatres of operation.

Propelled by the Scorpion programme, acoustic detection establishes itself as a vital technology for the protection of people, sites and vehicles: METRAVIB’s PILAR and PEARL systems were presented at the show across 15 vehicles and equipment supplier stands, as well as that of the French ministry of the armed forces and the CEAM.


Smart Alerts: Effective Protection

New innovation only has value when soldiers can easily use and trust the systems in combat. Considering acoustic detection, the trust comes from the new system’s ability to recognise and help troops pinpoint the source of fire as quickly as possible.

Committed to providing systems with the lowest incidence of false alarms in the market, the METRAVIB is also effective for protective functions like real-time updates of gunshot coordinates while a vehicle is moving, automatic coupling with the turret and sharing GPS coordinates of gunshot locations via Battle Management Systems (BMS).

French army’s VAB TOPs (front-line armoured vehicles with remotely operated turrets), METRAVIB’s systems are tried and tested, which has earned them the trust of the DGA and STAT.

“We are not stopping at providing high-performance sensors, we are also developing software that improves operational capabilities on the ground. Our systems are designed with an architecture that is open to interface with a maximum of protocols and standard software, and scalable, to integrate machine learning methods and artificial intelligence. With years of experience in the field, we are the ideal partner for data fusion in theatres of operation,” said Division Director, METRAVIB Defence, Frédéric Molliex.


Enhanced Hearing to Better Understand Threats

By exploiting all the key information contained in the sound signals, acoustics enable us to go far beyond simply localising gunshots. It’s now possible to provide highly qualitative information across an increasingly large field of threats: technology is evolving from gunshot-detection to decoding the overall sound environment.

Today, METRAVIB is capable of reliably recognising over 20,000 acoustic signatures (small arms, mortars, rocket launchers, helicopters or drones flying overhead, etc.), and identifying single, successive or simultaneous gunshots, as well as the calibre of arms used. All this data is exploited via the Man-Machine Interface (MMI) to map the entire threat: tactical decision-making thus becomes simpler and faster.


Communicating to Increase Data Reliability and Coordinate Resources

Designed to function as a network and easily integrate into military vetronics the METRAVIB’s acoustic detection systems, therefore, make it possible to exploit essential and multiple data between several acoustic sensors, to fuse the data of an acoustic sensor with that of an optronic sensor, or even to send data to third-party equipment like ‘scout’ drones to overfly and remotely monitor areas identified as threatening.

With these developments, acoustic detection becomes a vital data source for ‘infovalorisation’, the digitalisation of the battlefield and the collaborative combat; it also paves the way for a broader scope of application, for example, very noisy platforms or urban environments.

“I am delighted that so many of our partners are presenting our systems on their stands. The delegations will thus have the opportunity to discover a maximum of applications of our PILAR and PEARL systems. We are also very proud to show how we are capable of exploiting our data with mapping software, an important step in infovalorisation’, said sales director, METRAVIB Defence, Laurent Galindo,


Unleash the DroneCatcher!

Delft Dynamics showcased its latest version of its DroneCatcher counter-drone system. Due to the unique Releasable Drone concept of this innovative drone company, it will be possible to instantaneously deploy the DroneCatcher after detection of an unwanted drone. Thanks to the (powered) tether, it is possible for the DroneCatcher to stay in the air for hours and by unleashing the power cable, it immediately can fly to its ‘prey’ and shoot a net with DroneCatcher’s netgun system.

“As far as we know, we are the first in the world to show this releasable tethered drone concept and especially for countering drones, fast deployment is of utmost importance,” said CEO, Delft Dynamics B.V., Arnout de Jong.

DroneCatcher is a multicopter, that is armed with a netgun. It can safely remove unwanted drones from the air. After detection by, for example, a radar, vision or an acoustic system, DroneCatcher is able to quickly approach hovering or moving threats. With the use of multiple onboard sensors, the netgun can be locked on the target. Thanks to DroneCatcher’s track & trace capabilities, the drone will be caught by shooting a net. After the catch, DroneCatcher can bring the captured drone attached with a cable, to a harmless place. When the caught drone is too heavy to tow, the target can be dropped with a parachute to ensure low impact on the ground.


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