Airbus has been selected to take part in the NATO Airborne Warning & Control System (AWACS) Final Lifetime Extension Programme (FLEP). Under the agreement, Airbus will develop the Multi-Source Integration Software, a central asset of the NE-3A’s system, combining the numerous data available in real time within the aircraft.
The Final Lifetime Extension Programme (FLEP); one of the largest programs agreed by Alliance member nations, will ensure operability of the AWACS fleet until at least 2035 by addressing mandated upgrades to the NE-3A’s in areas of communications, mission computing hardware and software.
In this context, Airbus will provide an enhanced version of the Multi-Source Integration Software, based on its Fortion SuRVIn product. The tool will also include Ground Moving Target Indication (GMTI, land domain) and Automatic Identification System (AIS, maritime domain) data for the fusion process. Furthermore, the product is also enhanced by data analytics capabilities in order to provide means to cope with the vast amount of real time surveillance data and generate additional value.
“Airbus has been providing hardware and software for NATO's AWACS fleet for over 20 years and this new contract reaffirms our position as one of the leading technology companies in the Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance domain. Our Fortion SuRVIn solution enables the creation of real-time situational awareness by detecting, locating, tracking and identifying all types of air, maritime and ground objects therefore providing a unique situational image to operators and commanders” Harald Mannheim, Head of Defence Solutions at Airbus Defence and Space - Intelligence.
NATO AWACS represents one of the largest jointly funded programs agreed by Alliance member nations. The fleet composed of 14 aircraft manned by integrated international crews from 15 NATO member states is part of NATO's Early Warning & Control Force (NAEW&CF) established in 1980 and based in Geilenkirchen, Germany. They conduct a wide range of missions such as air policing, supporting counter-terrorism, evacuation operations, embargo, initial entry and crisis response.