Scorpion integrates Thales ISR kit to offering
Thales and Textron AirLand have successfully jointly integrated Thales' I-Master radar on to Textron AirLand's Scorpion Jet, the two companies said at the Paris Air Show today.
The addition of the radar into the Scorpion’s mission system compliments the Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) sensor suite which already includes a high end EO/IR capability.
Having integrated the multi-mode radar into Scorpion within just two weeks, the first flight trials took place in late May. Combined with an EO/IR camera, I-Master adds long range, wide area surveillance and target tracking. Both payloads are operated simultaneously by a single operator.
“Thales is very pleased to have worked with Textron Airland to integrate the Thales I-Master radar onto the Scorpion jet. As a market leader, we are continuously striving to improve our offerings. This joint exercise shows how flexible the radar is and how easily it can be integrated onto a platform. The combination of I-Master and the Scorpion jet demonstrates a powerful ‘surveillance and strike’ capability.” said Eddie Awang, Thales’s vice president in charge of ISR business
Textron AirLand’s Scorpion was introduced in 2013 and has completed more than 400 hours of flight testing with an exceptionally high mission availability score. It is a highly affordable, multi-mission aircraft offering diverse capabilities including intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, humanitarian assistance, disaster relief, advanced training and precision strike and is being offered in the Middle East and Africa.
Aircraft features include twin-engine power, two-seat operation, large internal payload capacity, high-definition ISR cameras, wing-mounted weapons stations, and modern avionics within an all-composite structure. With the ability to get to an escalating situation quickly – yet manoeuvring at much lower speeds, Scorpion brings the ability to see and exploit perishable intelligence and strike fleeting targets, bringing tactical advantage to demanding situations.
The Thales I-Master radar is a compact, lightweight, all-weather tactical surveillance radar, providing world-leading Ground Moving Target Indication (GMTI), Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) performance and Maritime Moving Target Indication (MMTI) mode. I-MASTER provides high fidelity imagery for locating and classifying both moving and stationary targets at long stand-off ranges over land and sea.
The choice of modes in a single sensor, together with its small form factor and high-performance capability, makes I-Master ideally suited for a range of air surveillance missions such as maritime security, border protection, disaster/humanitarian relief and counter narcotics.