Leonardo is taking the opportunity of the Farnborough Airshow this week to emphasise the success it has enjoyed with its OSPREY Active Electronically-Scanned Array (AESA) radar, which has been selected for platforms ranging from the MQ-8C FIRE SCOUT UAS to the AW101 helicopter. The only radar of its type currently available to offer full spherical coverage with no moving parts, over 40 OSPREYs have been sold to eight customers.
OSPREY builds on the success of the company’s SEASPRAY family of AESA surveillance radars, which have seen service with many armed forces and civilian agencies around the world since the first sale in 2005. Like SEASPRAY, OSPREY employs AESA technology, also known as ‘E-Scan’, technology which Leonardo innovatively applied to surveillance radars ahead of other radar manufactures. Today, having been sold to 30 countries, Leonardo’s AESA radars set the standard for surveillance radars internationally.
AESA technology involves a matrix of hundreds of tiny radar modules being used to ‘steer’ an electronic beam, rather than the radar physically moving to point at a target. This means the beam can be moved around extremely quickly, allowing the radar to perform multiple tasks simultaneously, for example carrying out maritime surveillance while at the same time monitoring weather along an aircraft’s flight path. Leonardo’s radars offer air-to-air and air-to-ground capabilities with a variety of advanced modes including the company’s patented small target detection capability.