Leonardo has announced a contract on Sunday, signed with the UK Ministry of Defence, to provide equipment that will simulate radar threats to the RAF’s new A400M transport aircraft prior to take-off.
By simulating threat radars while the aircraft is still on the ground, commanders will be able to ensure that the complex defensive aids suite fitted to the A400M will function correctly during flight and can, therefore, make an evidence-based decision on whether or not to commit to a mission in hostile territory.
The threat simulation equipment provided by Leonardo uses special Radio-Frequency (RF)-emitting
‘hoods’ which will cover the A400M’s sensors while the aircraft is still on the ground, stimulating its RF sensors with real radar energy. The MoD have procured one full system with through-life support, with additional orders anticipated as the RAF’s fleet size grows. As well as ensuring that the A400M’s defensive aids suite is working properly on a mission-by-mission basis, providing ‘capability assurance’ throughout the operational life of the A400M, the use of Leonardo’s equipment will also de-risk and reduce the cost of the aircraft’s flight trials, prior to entering RAF service, by ensuring that as much testing work as possible is carried out on the ground.
Most defensive aids suites, including that on the A400M, come with what is known as ‘built-in test equipment’ (BITE), which signals to the pilot that the equipment is working as designed.
However, throughout the life of an aircraft problems can emerge undetected as the aircraft is maintained and operated, for instance RF antenna head sensitivity can degrade, or they can be mistakenly installed incorrectly by being wired into the wrong aircraft quadrant. These type of issues cannot be picked up by BITE, leaving a gap where the equipment is technically operational, but could still endanger the crew as the installation is not operationally effective and could provide limited or incorrect information to the pilot. Leonardo’s ‘capability assurance’ equipment and training closes this gap.
As well as custom-fitted ‘hood’ equipment specific to the A400M, Leonardo will also provide its off-the-shelf handheld threat simulator, allowing crews to conduct a last-minute check immediately before taking off for a combat operation.
Airbus has awarded Thales a contract for two new A400M military training simulators for French and German air forces. The delivery of simulators will be in 2019 for French air force and 2020 for German air force
Airbus Defence & Space has signed a letter of intent (LOI) with an Indonesian Pelita Air Services for Jakartas possible acquisition of the A400M transport aircraft. The LOI was signed with Pelita Air Services, which represents a consortium of companies involved in aerospace, Airbus said in an email to
The UK Ministry of Defence (MOD) has negotiated a £410 million contract that will provide in-service support for the UKs Atlas A400M aircraft. The A400M is the latest addition to the RAFs tactical airlifter capability and can carry up to 37 tonnes of payload over a range of 2,000 nautical miles
Rheinmetall and Airbus Defence & Space have supplied the Cargo Hold Trainer Enhanced (CHT-E) for the A400M transport plane to the Royal Air Force on October 20 at a formal handover ceremony. This training system is located in the National Training Centre at the Royal Air Force station in Brize Norton, the company announced today
The UK Defense Ministry has signed a Foreign Military Sale agreement valued £260 million with the US Government to support RAF C-17 heavy lift transport aircraft into the next decade. The Foreign Military Sale agreement will provide support for the RAFs fleet of eight C-17A Globemaster III aircraft, which provided lifesaving humanitarian relief following Hurricane Irma last summer, the ministry announced on February 17
European aircraft manufacturer Airbus will showcase A400M, the new-generation military airlifter, at the upcoming Singapore Airshow to take place at the Changi Exhibition Centre in Singapore, 6-11 February. The A400M Atlas was designed specifically to meet the needs of European NATO nations, as well as the requirements of international air forces
The Spanish Air Force has taken the delivery of second of 27 A400Ms turboprop military transport aircraft from Airbus. The Directorate General of armaments and Material (DGAM) delivered the aircraft to the Spanish Air Force at the Airbus factory in Seville, the defense ministry reported Friday
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