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Plath eyes COMINT system for enhanced vehicle protection

Plath's metallic mock up resembling a Boxer armored personnel carrier (APC), used to illustrate the cylindrical COMINT payload's integration on board a generic ground combat vehicle. (Plath)

Electronic warfare specialist Plath is developing a communications intelligence (COMINT) payload to assist armoured vehicles in the detection and defeat of anti-tank weapons.

Speaking to Janes, company officials described how the “innovative sensor technology” was being designed with new technologies to support multiple platforms on land.

Plath is conducting internal research and development to design the payload. However, company sources also confirmed Plath was seeking additional funding from the German Armed Forces.

According to Dr. Ronald M. Meixner, chief executive officer of Plath Signal Products, the new payload comprises a communications warning receiver designed to detect the electromagnetic pulse generated by the launch of anti-tank guided munitions.

Once the launch of anti-tank ammunition has been successfully identified, Meixner described how a vehicle's active protection system (APS) could then be cued to defeat the incoming round through either the deployment of soft or hard kill effects.

Meixner said that several trials have been conducted in co-operation with Rheinmetall, manufacturer of the StrikeShield APS.

Referring to the employment of APS on the modern battlefield, however, Meixner warned, “By actively working with electromagnetic energy, a vehicle advertises its presence on the battlefield.”

Instead, he suggested Plath's new sensor could be employed as a “passive wake-up sensor” for APS, enabling armoured vehicles to minimise their electromagnetic signature across the battlefield.

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