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Late 2015, Saab unveiled a new family of surface-based AESA radars and a new fighter AESA, all with new technologies. The Swing Role Surveillance System (SRSS) is the latest chapter in the story of Saab sensor system development. Being a true swing-role, multi-purpose system, it can work across the air, land and maritime domains with multiple sensors in a single mission.

The current ERIEYE system already has an excellent reputation for long-range and high performance in complex environments, against both air and sea targets. ERIEYE specialises in detecting and tracking the most difficult target sets: In the air this includes all high-and-fast and low-and-slow targets, stealthy targets, cruise missiles, unmanned air vehicles (UAV), etc.

Saab's CEO Håkan Buskhe told Mönch that the UAE's new SRSS will be offered into the Asia-Pacific region, as well. Saab is responding to the challenge of carrying out air, ground, and maritime radar surveillance in a single platform. The Swedish defence manufacturer’s new SRSS airborne swing role surveillance system draws on previous generations of the company’s heritage ERIEYE system and also on Saab's wider development work across the entire spectrum of radar technology.

Saab, in an interview with Mönch, further declared that at sea the ERIEYE can operate out over the blue water ocean and in the most difficult littoral waters, while tracking targets as small as a jet ski. The SRSS adds a third dimension to this level of capability: An overland mode to detect and track moving targets across a wide area and over many different types of terrain.

The current SRSS configuration was developed in close coordination with the UAE customer to meet customer requirements. According to Saab the Bombardier GLOBAL 6000 is a high performance platform which, when coupled with Saab's system know-how will meet the requirements of many other nations, too.

During the FIDAE Air Show 2016, Saab explained how it is going to extend its airborne early warning and control (AEW&C) portfolio with the introduction of the GLOBALEYE multi-role airborne surveillance system. The solution combines Saab’s ERIEYE ER (Extended Range) radar and mission system with the GLOBAL 6000 jet aircraft from Bombardier, which has an operational time of more than 11 hours.

GLOBALEYE automatically detects and tracks air and surface (land and sea) targets. Ground surveillance of moving vehicles can be conducted through long-range, wide-area ground moving target indication (GMTI) radar modes. With the enhanced ERIEYE ER radar (range >450km), the system according to Saab can track very low-observable air and sea targets, including “stealthy” aircraft, cruise missiles or submarine periscopes, even in heavy clutter and jamming environments.

GLOBALEYE’s features also include amongst others EO/IR sensors, ESM/ELINT, and a self-protection system. “With GLOBALEYE we expand and sharpen our offering in Latina America, targeting customers looking to maximise their return on investment in extended AEW&C capabilities as a national asset to benefit their country,” Fredrik Gustafson, Country Manager for Spanish-speaking Latina America with Saab, informed Mönch.

Part of this family is the SWORDFISH mission system for maritime patrol aircraft (MPA), available on two new platforms; Bombardier’s Q400 turboprop and Global 6000 jet.

This flexibility of platforms, combined with Saab’s mission system know-how and integration skills, means that the SWORDFISH system can fulfil the widest range of maritime C4ISR and combat roles and missions, according to the company.

Saab’s SWORDFISH MPA mission system delivers strategic multi-role capabilities. The SWORDFISH is adept at long-duration patrol or SAR missions, but can also handle the most complex anti-submarine and anti-surface unit warfare tasks, all on the same mission. Swordfish also provides an effective overland ISR capability and can be easily introduced into a customer’s existing operations and support infrastructure.

Saab’s SWORDFISH mission system combines proven, operational COTS sensors from several suppliers, with Saab’s own specialist electronic warfare and C4I mission management systems. The advanced and tightly integrated sensor package is displayed on interchangeable work stations with an intelligent degree of automation and system support, meaning more can be achieved with fewer operators.

We are proud to offer the cutting-edge Swordfish MPA system on a brand-new, high-performance aircraft, which can be a turboprop or a jet. Potential customers are free to select the platform that best serves their operational needs,” Jonas Hjelm, Head of Saab business area Support and Services, told Mönch.

In Bombardier’s Q400 and Global 6000 Saab has selected two market-leading aircraft with a firm production base and a fleet of many hundreds in service. The Q400 and Global 6000 are known for their high levels of reliability and performance. With these platforms, Saab’s SWORDFISH mission suite gives operators multiple domain awareness; from littoral waters to the open ocean, and all places in between. Already an experienced prime contractor and mission systems integrator, Saab now has the platform flexibility to meet the national needs of any customer.

We have a unique capability in systems integration on various platforms and we look forward to cooperating with Bombardier on our SWORDFISH MPA system. Saab is perhaps best known as an aircraft maker and we have a deep understanding of how to design and build for the air domain. But never forget our unique knowledge of the maritime domain also; we build submarines, surface ships and a host of underwater systems including torpedoes. This total familiarity with the air and maritime environment makes us the best source for an effective, cost-efficient, state-of-the-art MPA system for the global market,” Jonas Hjelm continued.

Saab predicts a steady trend of fixed-wing maritime aircraft opportunities in line with the continued proliferation of submarines. This is particularly true across the Asia Pacific region where more than 100 submarines are predicted to be operating by the year 2020.

Saab on 28 October released that it has signed a support contract for airborne surveillance systems to an undisclosed customer. The contract is valid for 2016-2017 and the order is valued at SEK200 million. The contract concerns support and services for a previously delivered system of Saab 2000 AEW&C.

At Dubai Airshow 2015, the UAE Armed Forces said publically they would acquire two SRSS aircraft along with upgrades to its existing ERIEYE aircraft (Saab 340 platform) under the terms of a November 2015 contract. (Graphic: Saab)

- Mönch Publications - Latest Issues -

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