Two years after the type made its public debut at SOFEX, one of Joint Special Operation Command’s two AC-235 light gunships has returned to the show site. In the intervening period the aircraft – built by Airbus and with a mission system devised and installed by Orbital ATK in partnership with KADDB – has been used operationally.
Orbital ATK has designed a mission package for the aircraft that allows it to undertake a range of gunship and ISR missions. The aircraft is fitted with defensive countermeasures, including directed infrared countermeasures, and an AAR-47 missile approach warning system, and it has a sensor suite including an L-3 Wescam MX- 15 electro-optic turret under the port forward fuselage and Thales I-Master Ku-band synthetic aperture radar/ground moving target indicator in a turret to starboard.
With its sophisticated mission system and sensor suite, and an ATK M230 30mm Chain Gun to intervene if required, the AC-235 is an ideal tool for border patrol and special forces support duties.