SAGE advice [INDODEF16-D2]

02 November 2016

Indonesia’s air force has just placed into service an Airbus Defence and Space CN235MPA aircraft outfitted with the SAGE electronic support measures (ESM) equipment from Leonardo-Finmeccanica. The aircraft was modified by PT Dirgantara Indonesia (PTDI) working with the US special mission integration/ installation specialist Integrated Surveillance and Defense.

PTDI carried out the installation earlier in the year, the SAGE 600 system being integrated with the tactical mission system, and flight trials took place during the summer. The air force is operating the aircraft in a maritime environment, where a clear understanding of an adversary’s electromagnetic capabilities is essential.

The system provides the ability to detect, locate and identify radio frequency emitters, such as air defence radars, in turn permitting the compilation of an electronic order of battle.

SAGE identifies radars by comparing the received signals against an emitter threat library.

SAGE was developed by Leonardo (formerly Selex ES) as a cost-effective and compact digital ESM system for a variety of platforms, from UAVs to large patrol aircraft. The system is in service on Korea’s Leonardo AW159 naval helicopters, and during next year will enter service with the Brazilian navy’s AW159s. Last month the system was demonstrated during the major Royal Navy Unmanned Warrior exercise, carried by the optionally piloted SW4 Solo helicopter and unmanned Schiebel Camcopter.

Leonardo also has expertise in building facilities for EWOS (electronic warfare operational support) to maximise the capabilities of both its own and third-party equipment. Such facilities can provide countries with sovereign capabilities to provide their own EW support and produce tailored mission data files.

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