Indra and the Polytechnic University of Madrid (UPM) are to partner in development of the sensor suite for the Spanish Navy’s future PROTEC F110-class frigate, the company announced on 22 November.
UPM will now be included in the Industrial Plan for the PROTEC Program, launched to develop and integrate the sensor suite. The deal was formalised in the signature of a partnership agreement with the UPM Rogelio Segovia Foundation for the Development of Telecommunications (Fundetel) and the Indra-UPM Research Chair at the university's Faculty of Telecommunications Engineering.
Work will commence immediately and last through 2019. Initial collaboration will focus on the IFF system, the X-band surveillance radar and the radar electronic support measures (RESM) system. Indra will work with UPM’s Radiation, Microwave and Radar groups, with which it already has a history of cooperation.
Indra and Navantia are working closely together in the PROTEC F110 R&D programme to equip the vessel with a novel mast that to house all sensors. Flat elements will lower the radar cross section, making them harder to detect and the high level of digitalisation will significantly enhance function and performance.
Indra's input consists of developing the primary radars for aerial and surface surveillance; the secondary radar or IFF system; the RESM and communications systems, and their countermeasure systems; and the Link 16 communications system, all of which will be integrated into the Navantia SCOMBA combat system.
This agreement allows Indra to proceed with the Industrial Plan associated with the PROTEC programme, under which it has undertaken to be the driving force for stimulating appropriate research at Spanish universities. The agreement highlights the benefits to be gained from university-business collaboration in the development of highly complex technological solutions.