EADS Selected for CARAPAS Demonstrator

Released on Thursday, April 29, 2004
CARAPAS - CApacité drone RAPide AntileurreS
ELINT - Electronic Intelligence
EO/IR - Electro-Optical/InfraRed
ESM - Electronic Support Measures
IR - InfraRed
UAV - Unmanned Aerial Vehicle
EADS Defense and Communications systems (an EADS subsidiary) has been selected by French DGA (French Armaments Procurement Agency) to build the fast UAV CARAPAS demonstrator.

The expertise gained with the CARAPAS demonstrator program will be applied to define requirements specification for the Multi Sensors Multi Missions Program.

The CARAPAS Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) demonstrator includes the UAV, mission sensors, data links and associated ground segment. These elements will ensure mission planning, flight monitoring, mission exploitation and data fusion.

According to EADS, CARAPAS demonstrator will leverage technology and operational experience from Galileo Avionica Mirach 100-5 aerial target drone. Galileo Avionica is a partner for the CARAPAS program.

CARAPAS specifications consists of flight speeds ranging from Mach 0.25 to 0.65 (80 to 220 m/s), a range of 600 km and a payload of 60 kg for reconnaissance missions. The CARAPAS payload can include a passive wide area surveillance ESM/ELINT package and an Electro Optical Infrared (EO/IR) sensor for reconnaissance and identification of ground targets by day, night and adverse weather conditions.

The CARAPAS demonstrator will be ready in 18 months in late 2005. A typical mission will be a high speed flight at medium or high altitude while the ESM/ELINT payload detects, locates and identifies all active transmitters in a wide area beneath the flight path across a large range of frequencies. Potential transmitter correlation by EO/IR sensors will be carried out with CARAPAS flying at low altitude.

Correlation of data provided by ESM/ELINT sensors through EO/IR payloads is envisaged as the only realistic way to counter decoys that could be deployed to protect the transmitter achieving precise location of a potential target. Anti-decoy capability is a critical milestone for the CARAPAS demonstrator program.

The CARAPAS anti-decoy reconnaissance UAV demonstrator is intended for the French Army and could operate in conjunction with other larger UAVs owned by the French Air Force.


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