DSEi 2013: Show report
The Defence Systems and Equipment International (DSEi), held biannually in London has become the most definitive global military equipment show. The recently concluded DSEi 2013 brought together over 30,000 of the global defence and security industry to source the latest equipment and systems, develop international relations, and generate new business opportunities. There were nearly 1,500 international exhibitions from over 50 countries, showcasing specialised equipment in air, naval, land, security, medical and unmanned zones. Notwithstanding the continuing dull economic climate, companies were aggressive in their marketing of their products, some of them being launched only at DSEi.
Nexter launches low-cost UGV
Nexter Robotics, a subsidiary of the French Nexter Group, launched NERVA ¨ S unmanned ground vehicle (UGV), small, low-cost, fourwheeled UGV optimised for use in the reconnaissance role and in confined spaces. It is essentially a smaller version of the NERVA LG UGV, which was first revealed in mid-2012 for military applications. The development of the NERVA S UGV now enables Nexter Robotics to offer a wider range of products to meet different user requirements.
Rolls-Royce unveils maritime patrol craft design
Rolls-Royce unveiled a new design of maritime patrol craft. The first of a ‘protection vessel family’ of designs, the new 55-metre craft features a range of equipment from Rolls-Royce (stabilisers, thrusters, steering gear, fixed-pitch propellers) and MTU (diesels, diesel generators, Callosum IPMS), offering a cost-effective capability that can be tailored to mission requirements. The initial 55-metre variant is aimed at patrol, search and rescue and interception duties. A 90-metre version will be on offer by the end of the year, with a 75-metre design following in 2014.
FLIR Systems showcases security solutions
FLIR Systems Inc showcased 360° maritime security solutions to detect, identify and track threats to critical coastal infrastructure and maritime assets such as ships and yachts, as well as coastal borders. Already deployed around the world, this capability, powered by CommandSpace adaptive C2 software for maritime solutions, integrates FLIR Systems’ imaging and radar technologies with underwater sonar and other sensors to create a full, 3D maritime situational awareness shield around an asset.
The company’s SeaFLIR 280-HD is specifically designed for naval forces whose equipment necessarily has size constraints, yet requires range and high definition (HD) imagery performance. The SeaFLIR 280-HD is the world’s first compact, maritime HD EO/IR imaging sensor.
Airbus Military pitches C295 as multi-role airlifter
Airbus Military made a pitch of its C295 as multi-role airlifter as the platform for a possible UK maritime patrol aircraft requirement. Airbus Military’s C295 offers an affordable and versatile platform for the MPA/ASW mission and is already operating in these duties with Chile. Its fully integrated tactical system offers a truly open architecture system that can integrate many systems and sensor types. The aircraft has already demonstrated its ability to carry weapons in the form of torpedoes and anti-ship missiles.
Lockheed Martin presents Fury UAV
Lockheed Martin showcased Fury UAV in the UK for the first time. The company is proposing the air vehicle as a multi-intelligence platform, with low visual and acoustic signatures but high range and endurance performance. It is classed as a Group 3 UAV, for tactical and expeditionary applications. Lockheed Martin claims it has the biggest payload capacity and volume of any runway-independent UAVs.
Fury is launched from a rail and recovered to a net. It can operate
at up to 15,000 feet and has an endurance of more than 15 hours. It is powered by a heavy fuel engine to provide commonality with ground vehicles and offers a large available power surplus for onboard systems. The payload bay can be reconfigured for a variety of sensors. Shielded avionics are installed to protect against strong RF signals such as jamming.
Atlas Elektronik reveals unmanned minesweeper
Atlas Elektronik UK unveiled its new ARCIMS (Atlas Remote Combined Influence Minesweeping System) suite. The company has also disclosed that it will shortly deliver an initial two ARCIMS to meet the needs of an undisclosed customer. Designed to address requirements for a next-generation of networked offboard unmanned mine countermeasures (MCM) systems, ARCIMS has built upon Atlas Elektronik UK’s long pedigree in MCM. This includes the rapid development and delivery of the Royal Navy’s Shallow Water Influence Minesweeping System for operations in the northern Arabian Gulf in 2003.
Cassidian launches X-band naval radar
Cassidian, the defence division of EADS, launched an X-band naval surface surveillance radar optimised for the detection of extremely small objects and countering asymmetric threats. Based upon the latest active electronically scanning array (AESA) radar technology, the company’s tactical radar for surface surveillance (TRSS) system is claimed to “substantially increase the detection capabilities, and thus the protection level, of navy ships and coast guard vessels”.
Rafael presents Typhoon
Rafael showcased the Typhoon MLS NLOS for the first time, having unveiled this new iteration of its popular stabilised marine weapon station earlier this year. This version mounts eight launchers for the company’s Spike-NLOS missile, the longest-range member of a popular family of guided missiles. Typhoon MLS NLOS also carries a Toplite observation and targeting sensor turret. Related systems developed by Rafael are the Typhoon 30 with a 30mm ATK Mk 44 Bushmaster cannon, and Typhoon MLS-ER with machine gun and Spike-ER missile launchers.
Cassidian’s high-grade encryption device
Cassidian, the security and defence arm of EADS, launched its latest high-grade encryption device. The Ectocryp Blue v2 solution – the core product in the Ectocryp family – can transfer information classified up to top secret across public networks, allowing organisations to minimise the risk of cyber attack. Blue is Europe’s fastest, HAIPE-certified (High Assurance Internet Protocol Encryptor) remotely operated cryptographic device. Ectocryp solutions have already found application in the UK and USA. Ectocryp Yellow, the next stage in sovereign UK cryptographic development, is a portable, low-cost, interoperable basis for highly secure strategic and tactical networks.
BAE System air-to-air refuelling for tanker missions
BAE Systems Regional Aircraft revealed its proposal for an air-toair refuelling (A2R) version of the BAe 146/Avro RJ regional airliner. With its high wing and T-tail configuration, the 146 is considered an ideal platform for the tanker mission, and could be well suited to refuelling tilt-rotor aircraft. BAE Systems has carried out proximity trials with a Hawk trainer and other 146 aircraft to confirm that the aerodynamic environment behind the 146 is sufficiently benign for tanker operations. With a large number of pre-owned 146s and RJs available for refurbishment and conversion, the types could represent a cost-efficient means of providing a tanker capability, either for frontline operations or for training receivers without using larger, more expensive tankers.
CTruk presents THOR
Making its first public appearance, the twin hulled offshore raider (THOR) high-speed vessel developed by CTruk starred in the twicedaily waterborne demonstrations. Designed to meet requirements for a fast, stable multi-role force protection craft, THOR has been developed by CTruk in partnership with a number of allied companies under the banner of the CTruk CAP (Collaborative Amphibious Project) consortium. This industry group has been established with the intention of competing in a market traditionally dominated by larger companies.
THOR has been conceived as an affordable multi-role craft that can be used in a variety of applications, ranging from force protection and riverine patrol, to disaster relief and casualty evacuation. Built from lightweight composite material, and with a speed in excess of 40 kts, the twin-hull THOR craft is able to operate for sustained periods at long ranges.
As the complexity of war increases, so does the equipment and companies have showed the technological prowess as witnessed at the show.
Saab Barracuda Mobile Camouflage System
Nexter’s new unmanned ground vehicle
Rolls-Royce’s new design of maritime patrol craft
Rafael’s Spike NLOS on a vehicle
Atlas Remote Combined Influence Minesweeping System