Leonardo Airborne and Space Systems (Stand 06-A03) has been selected by Safran Electronics & Defense to supply its PicoSAR Active Electronically-Scanned Array radar for Safran’s Patroller Unmanned Air System (UAS).
Patroller was in April 2016 selected to meet the French armed forces’ Système de Drone tactique programme. Fourteen are due to enter into service with the army’s 61st Artillery Regiment in 2018.
With an endurance of 20 hours, and an operating ceiling of 20,000ft, the Patroller UAS will be used to provide real-time surveillance and intelligence in support of French land forces. Its modular design enables it to carry a multi-sensor intelligence payload exceeding 250kg, either installed in the airframe or in pods.
PicoSAR, which will be used for long-range overland surveillance missions, was selected by Safran following an international competition. Under the multi-million euro contract, Leonardo will provide a number of radars and spares, with deliveries set to start later this year.
According to Leonardo, PicoSAR will be used to detect moving land-based targets and collect imagery of the ground using the system’s Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) mode. PicoSAR is able to produce SAR imagery in both ‘strip’ and ‘spot’ modes, as well as collecting ground-moving target indication data.
Leonardo has to date sold Pico- SAR to more than 10 customers worldwide.