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Northrop Grumman completes live demo of new deep-sensing capability

A Bombadier CRJ700, similar to the aircraft used during the DSaT demonstration during the US Army's EDGE 2023 technology experiments. (Bombardier)

Programme engineers at Northrop Grumman have completed live demonstrations of its new Deep-Sensing and Targeting (DSaT) system for US Army officials as part of the service's annual Experimental Demonstration Gateway Event (EDGE) exercises.

The DSaT system was mounted aboard a civilian Bombardier CRJ700 and conducted data collection, fusion, and dissemination of beyond-the-line-of-sight battlefield intelligence “during a simulated, real-world tactical scenario”, according to a 28 August company statement.

“We are supporting the [army's] targeting needs with intelligence collection beyond line of sight and leveraging aerial assets in providing multidomain fused data directly to the front lines,” Northrop Grumman vice-president of Integrated National Systems Pablo Pezzimenti said in the statement regarding the DSaT capability demonstration.

Company officials did not provide specifics on what DSaT capabilities were demonstrated during the EDGE 2023 exercises, and under what kind of real-world combat scenarios those capabilities were fielded against. However, programme leaders did note that the DSaT platform was able to gather and fuse “multidomain data for rapid dissemination” to army tactical operations centres that stood up as part of the EDGE 2023 exercises, according to the August statement.

The system also “collected and analysed data from commercial satellites onboard the aircraft” and met all service criteria for the demonstration, the statement noted.

As defined, the DSaT is a “multidomain deep-sensing architecture” specifically designed to be integrated into civilian aircraft to fill operational gaps in intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) requirements for targets “beyond the visual line of sight of local sensors”, programme officials said in the statement.

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