Saab Australia’s Mode 5 IFF upgrade to the Australian Army’s Short Range Air Defence (SHORAD) has received US certification, which means Army’s RBS 70 missile system can be safely deployed on operations with US and coalition forces.
The Mode 5 upgrade provides a more secure way of identifying Australian, US and coalition combat units to avoid the chance of ‘blue-on-blue’ fratricide incidents, Saab says.
“IFF Mode 5 ensures Australian ground-based air defence crews can participate in allied missions operating in shared airspaces confidently,” says Trevor Bate, project manager, Saab Australia.
“Mode 5 is critical for knowing who is a friend and who isn’t in complex operational environments.”
The three key components of the Australian Army’s SHORAD system supplied by Saab are being upgraded, the RBS 70 missile launcher, Giraffe AMB radar, and the Tactical Command and Control System (TaCCS).
TaCCS was developed in Australia by Saab to analyse tracks from the radar, allocate threats to one or more RBS 70s and provide queueing of the RBS 70 to the track, while the Giraffe AMB radar provides 3D surveillance and C3 functionality with early warning against multiple air threats, including incoming rocket, artillery and mortar rounds.
Certification activities involved co-operation between the AIR 90 Project Office, the Combat Systems SPO, Saab Australia and Saab Dynamics AB.
It was the first time Mode 5 IFF work has been undertaken in Australia, and the first time a Short Range Air Defence system has been certified outside of the US.