ADi News2021-02-22 13:41:15
Raytheon UK’s next-gen GPS anti-jamming system, Landshield, has been developed to not only provide alerts on the presence of interfering signals and data in real time but also nullifies the effects of a whole range of hostile jammers.
The shielding technology not only alerts users to the presence of interfering signals, it also provides critical, real-time situational awareness data to support operational success in GPS-contested environments.
Electronic warfare techniques are becoming increasingly sophisticated at impacting and incapacitating the mission effectiveness of operational platforms, particularly within the Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance, or C4ISR, spectrum.
Military reliance on Global Navigation Satellite Systems, or GNSS, for operations has led to an increase in both intentional and unintentional interference, using Global Positioning System, or GPS, jammers to undermine and disrupt enemy positioning, navigation and timing systems. Parallel to this threat is the rise of spoofing, the use of sophisticated techniques to make systems appear to drift off their navigation position.
“This is well recorded in the commercial piracy environment, where ships get spoofed off-course, hijacked and pirated," said Sean Hodges-Jackson, business development executive, Assured Positioning, Navigation and Timing at Raytheon UK. “An example in the military context could be spoofing an incoming missile such that it doesn’t reach its primary target.
“Spoofing is undermining confidence in current military systems and our next-generation of anti-jamming products are being designed with this in mind,” he said.
Landshield, Raytheon UK’s next-generation GPS anti-jamming system, has been developed to null the effects of a full range of hostile jammers. The shielding technology not only alerts users to the presence of interfering signals, it also provides critical, real-time situational awareness data to support operational success in GPS-contested environments.
Raytheon UK’s intelligent GPS anti-jamming antennas sound an alarm when the data they receive appears untrustworthy, warning users about possible spoofing and enabling them to double-check the integrity of the information.
Landshield can also give users a greater understanding of the threat scenario by identifying the direction and characteristics of the multiple jamming sources, including whether there is spoofing interference and what that interference is doing.
Low cost, low size, weight and power solutions are central to Raytheon UK technology innovation in this area to enable the fitment of Landshield and Landshield Plus AJ systems to a wider range of space-constrained platforms including land vehicles, helicopters, weapon systems and UAVs.
Weighing just 1 kilogramme, Landshield houses a four-element controlled reception pattern antenna and anti-jamming processing in a single, integrated, compact and affordable solution.
It is the first product to enter production at Raytheon UK’s recently opened Livingston facility in Scotland; three international customers have chosen Landshield to protect air platforms, weapons system and land platforms.
Raytheon UK has been at the forefront of GPS anti-jamming technology development for 25 years and says the market is evolving.
Sean Hodges-Jackson said: “Our APNT team is researching and developing alternative technologies to augment GNSS in contested or denied environments such as exploiting signals of opportunity, developing smarter antennas and researching innovative quantum technologies to assess whether these would benefit our product line in the future.”
In the military user community, Raytheon UK is seeing the desire from platform integrators to avoid integrating multiple sensors, antennas and receivers. The vision is for a central mission computer that would allow mission capabilities including satellite anti-jamming to be miniaturized onto electronic cards and fit into a rack on a vehicle.
“It’s about continuing to stay one step ahead, developing solutions that provide military users with trusted data to ensure mission effectiveness both in GNSS-degraded and -denied operations,” said Alex Rose-Parfitt, Raytheon UK’s director of Engineering.
In 2020, for instance, Raytheon UK awarded research and development funding to Nottingham Scientific Limited to produce a feasibility study on a satellite-based system design to monitor Global Navigation Satellite System signals to protect them from spoofing and jamming.
Rose-Parfitt added: “As we’ve moved to low size, weight and power, we’ve captured more customers that historically could not fit this technology, and we see that customer base only expanding.”
Raytheon UK has delivered in excess of 13,000 GPS Anti-Jam systems to the US, UK, NATO and 15 other foreign military sales-approved governments. These systems have been deployed on more than 40 different platforms including aircraft, UAVs, naval vessels and land vehicles.
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