IAI Signs $350 Million Special Mission Aircraft Contract with European Customer

Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) has received a $350 million Special Mission Aircraft related contract from a major European country, the company announced.

The contract will be executed by IAI’s ELTA Systems subsidiary, a global leader in the Special Mission Aircraft domain.

“As part of IAI’s strategy, we are bolstering our presence in Europe for leveraging our business and extending cooperation. IAI’s Special Mission Aircraft offer advanced and unique technological capabilities to meet a broad range of most demanding intelligence missions. Europe represents a strategic business region for IAI, and we will continue to broaden our products and services to bring our unique technologies to the benefit of our customer’s evolving operational requirements,” said Gideon Landa, ELTA VP and GM Airborne Systems.

IAI delivered Special Mission Aircraft to Israel Defence Forces (IDF) and numerous countries worldwide, and are considered to be strategic assets. IAI is one of a select few companies which have these technology capabilities in-house.

IAI SIGINT and AEW Aircraft
Israel Defence Forces’ Gulfstream V Nahshon-Shavit SIGINT (background) and Gulfstream G550 Nachshon-Eitam Conformal Airborne Early Warning (CAEW) aircraft.

The company achieved a major breakthrough in Special Mission Aircraft thanks to advanced sensor miniaturization technology coupled with Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning software applications, allowing high-performance business jets to be used as Special Mission Aircraft. Previously, most of the Special Mission Aircraft in the world were based on converted cargo or passenger planes.

IAI/ELTA offers four lines of Special Mission Aircraft:

AEW&C (Airborne Early Warning & Control) Aircraft

An AEW&C aircraft utilizes an AESA radar and IFF (Identification, Friend or Foe), SIGINT and Communication systems to generate and disseminate an Air and Maritime Situational Picture. It also contains an Air Battle Management and Strike Aircraft Guidance System.

ELTA’s CAEW (Conformal Airborne Early Warning) aircraft is fitted with a dual-band AESA radar providing complete uncompromised 360° azimuthal coverage and is an example of a leading in the class system based on a business jet. IAI has entered into cooperation agreements with Airbus and Embraer to develop and market additional AEW&C aircraft variants.

IAI ELTA ELW-2085 Conformal Airborne Early Warning & Control (CAEW) aircraft based on Gulfstream 550 platform. Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) Photo.

AGS (Air to Ground Surveillance) Aircraft:

An AGS aircraft uses advanced AESA SAR/GMTI radar, SIGINT and EO/IR sensors and an Intelligence Management System to cover large areas, providing Real-time detection, identification, tracking and distribution of surface targets from standoff range in all weather and visibility conditions.

A leading product in this category is the IAI MARS2 that includes a breakthrough Digital AESA SAR/GMTI radar and latest generation SIGINT integrated with an advanced Multi-INT system, carried by a high-performance business jet.

IAI ELTA ELI-3150 MARS2 (Multi-Mission Airborne Reconnaissance and Surveillance System) Multi-mission Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition, and Reconnaissance (ISTAR) aircraft. Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) Photo.

MPA (Maritime Patrol Aircraft)

An MPA is equipped with high-performance AESA radar, SIGINT and EO/IR sensors to create an up-to-date maritime picture during Search And Rescue missions, Maritime policing, Environmental Monitoring, Anti Surface Warfare (ASuW) and Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) in support of Naval and Coast Guard operations.

ELTA’s MPAs are based on business jets and turboprop platforms featuring the world leader combat-proven ELM-2022 radar family, serving in many countries on all continents.

IAI ELTA ELI-3360 Maritime Patrol Aircraft (MPA) based on Bombardier Global 6500 platform. Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) Photo.

SIGINT (Signals Intelligence) aircraft

A SIGINT aircraft monitors the electromagnetic spectrum to detect and accurately locate emitter arrays and communication networks, creating a complete Electromagnetic Order of Battle over the entire large arena of interest.

ELTA has developed and provided the most advanced SIGINT aircraft to the IDF on a business jet platform and supplied airborne SIGINT systems to many Special Mission Aircraft worldwide.

IAI ELTA ELI-3001 Airborne Integrated Signal Intelligence System (AISIS) SIGINT aircraft.

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