Thales’s technologies are onboard the nEUROn, Europe’s unmanned combat air vehicle (UCAV) stealth technology demonstrator, which successfully completed its maiden flight on December 2012 from the Dassault Aviation company’s flight test base in Istres, southern France, in collaboration with the flight test personnel of the French defense procurement agency (DGA).
Thales technology made a substantial contribution to this milestone event, thanks most notably to the high-performance GPS hybrid military inertial system. The inertial system contributes to the drone primary data (position and attitudes). The high level of performance can be achieved thanks to hybridization algorithms and to the use of GPS and EGNOS signals. Thales also develops the communication system which allows the «control-command» of the nEUROn thanks to a remote station and the transmission of images/ videos of the onboard sensors. This secured system works in Ku band with the TMA/G 6000 terminal and in V/UHF band with the NextW@ve radio.
Thales is also strongly involved in FCAS (Future Combat Air System), the bilateral UK-French cooperation on UCAS, together with Dassault Aviation, BAE Systems, Rolls-Royce Snecma Ltd and Selex ES. Following the French UK summit held in January 2013, the six companies started the first phase of an UCAS Demonstrator Programme. Thales will supply the French components of the RF (radar, electronic warfare) and EO/IR Sensors (targeting, situation awareness) and of the Communications (Line of Sight and Satellite…) and avionics sensors, computing resources and functions.