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Farnborough 2022: UK-Japan firms agree on combat sensor concept for FCAS/F-X

A lab demonstration of technologies being developed for the Jaguar advanced combat air sensing system. (Leonardo UK-Mitsubishi Electric)

An advanced combat air sensor technology demonstrator called Jaguar has moved closer to development, following agreements at Farnborough International Airshow.

Leonardo UK and Mitsubishi Electric announced on 18 July that they have agreed on the concept for the sensor. Leonardo UK said that this follows the completion of joint concept work and feasibility studies conducted earlier in 2022.

The Jaguar is intended to benefit the UK's Future Combat Air System (FCAS) and Japan's F-X advanced fighter programmes. Janes has earlier reported that Tokyo is interested in joint development of the F-X sixth-generation fighter with the UK.

The Jaguar sensor system, which was first unveiled in February, is meant to enhance future fighter aircraft's ability to conduct long-range search over a larger area, detect future threats, locate targets, and deny surveillance technology from adversarial units. According to Leonardo UK, the system will provide enhanced radar functions as well as advanced new capabilities. This includes denying or disrupting adversarial surveillance systems.

The agreement between the two companies is reflective of progress made by international partners on multiple subsystem technology developments for the FCAS/F-X fighter programmes, according to Leonardo UK.

The UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) said that the Jaguar is a universal radio frequency sensor technology that can “better detect future threats from air, land, and sea, quickly and accurately locate targets and deny surveillance technology operated by our adversaries”.

The technology generated by the Jaguar project is expected to lead the development of Tempest fighter aircraft's Integrated Sensing and Non-Kinetic Effects-Integrated Communications System (ISANKE-ICS).

The Tempest is being developed by BAE Systems under the FCAS programme.

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