Hensoldt has successfully concluded testing its collision avoidance radar system intended for unmanned aerial systems (UAS), the company announced on 16 January. The sensor is intended to improve safety in both military and civilian air traffic control applications.

HENSOLDT has developed a demonstrator of a so-called ‘detect-and-avoid’ radar system, which uses the latest radar technology to detect objects in the flight path of a UAS and to give early warning of any threat of collision, following precise evaluation of the flight direction. At the same time, the sensor also assumes all the functions of a weather radar system.

In the flight tests, which were carried out on behalf of the German procurement authority BAAINBw and in collaboration with the German Aerospace Center (DLR) in Brunswick, the radar demonstrated its capabilities in a real setting, thus confirming the results previously achieved in ground tests. In test flights lasting several hours, the radar installed in a Dornier Do 228 belonging to DLR reliably detected the test aircraft approaching at different altitudes and angles.

The detect-and-avoid radar system uses state-of-the-art Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) technology, which allows several detection tasks to be carried out simultaneously and enables objects to be detected extremely fast. It replaces the pilot’s visual assessment of the situation. Thanks to its significant detection capabilities, the multifunction radar is equally suitable for both military and civilian UAS, e.g. for the delivery of cargo. A second series of flight tests is planned for the coming year.

Transmit/receive modules of Hensoldt’s new detect-and-avoid radar in the nose of the demonstrator aircraft. (Photo: Hensoldt)

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