MBDA Missile Systems, working in conjunction with Airbus Defence and Space and ONERA, is exploring a novel navigation solution for future long-range cruise missile systems that would use satellite communications (satcom) signals as a means to maintain precision navigation accuracies at range.
The company is claiming a first demonstration of satcom-aided navigation in the field as part of the Resilient and Autonomous Satcom Navigation (REASON) project, part of the UK/French Materials and Components for Missiles Innovation and Technology Partnership (MCM IPT) programme. REASON has set out to evaluate the technical and system-level feasibility and benefits of using specialist satellite signals as an aid to navigation.
MBDA has led the year-long REASON study and provided performance metrics for the assessment. Airbus has taken responsibility for the concept system and demonstration, with ONERA providing the simulation environment.
For a medium-to-long duration flight, cruise missile systems require additional information to support inertial measurement unit (IMU) sensors to achieve the required level of guidance accuracy. Recent years have seen greater reliance on Global Positioning System (GPS)/Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) signals to provide navigation updates to correct IMU drift.
Want to read more? For analysis on this article and access to all our insight content, please enquire about our subscription options at ihsmarkit.com/janes