C4iSR: Joint & Common Equipment

Pacific 2017: Ultra Electronics introduces sonobuoy mission pod concept to Asia-Pacific region

03 October 2017

Key Points

  • Ultra Electronics is showcasing a mission pod concept that allows fixed- and rotary-winged UAVs to deploy sonobuoys
  • Concept is expected to gain traction given the rapid proliferation of unmanned aerial systems, said the company

A scale model of the sonobuoy mission pod concept on display at Pacific 2017 (IHS Markit/Ridzwan Rahmat)A scale model of the sonobuoy mission pod concept on display at Pacific 2017 (IHS Markit/Ridzwan Rahmat)

Ultra Electronics is showcasing the company’s sonobuoy dispenser concept for manned and unmanned platforms in the Asia-Pacific region for the first time at the Pacific 2017 exhibition in Sydney.

The concept is being showcased with the intention of generating awareness, and show operators of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) in the region that these platforms can be used as effective anti-submarine warfare (ASW) platforms, an Ultra Electronics official told Jane’s during an interview on 4 October.

UAVs that can be equipped with the sonobuoy mission pod range from the Northrop Grumman MQ-4C Triton maritime surveillance high altitude long endurance (HALE) platform to the Schiebel S-100 rotary-winged UAS, said Peter Weir, market leader for Ultra Electronics’ Electronic Warfare and C2ISR division.

“The sonobuoy mission pod has been built with a bracket that can interface with hard points found on most UAVs and even helicopters,” said Wier, adding that the system has been designed for rapid front-line installation and removal.

According to specifications provided by the company, the sonobuoy mission pod has been designed to operate at altitudes of up to 30,000 ft, and speeds of up to 150 kt. The system can dispense sonobuoys at a rate of one every 2.5 seconds, and can work with Ultra Electronic’s spectrum sonobuoy products including the high-instantaneous-dynamic-range (HIDAR) and mini-HIDAR series.

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