Larger ‘radar ghost’ for Larger Transport Aircraft
At EW Europe in Lausanne on 5 June, Leonardo announced the latest variant of its BriteCloud missile decoy family, the 55-T, aimed at the protection of large transport aircraft such as the C27-J, C-130, KC-390 and A400M. The 55-T, in final development and available for delivery from early 2019, will join the existing BriteCloud 55 and 218 variants, which protect fighter aircraft.
The size of a drinks can, BriteCloud uses a miniaturised RF jamming module to decoy radar-guided missiles. The 55, extensively tested by the Royal Air Force (and recently cleared for combat operations by the service), gave Leonardo a wealth of experience on which to base further development. The 55-T benefits from further success in miniaturisation and generates the larger ‘ghost’ required to seduce even advanced missiles away from larger transport aircraft.
BriteCloud is a breakthrough technology, with Leonardo currently the only provider of DRFM expendable active decoy technology worldwide. The company is in active discussions with export customers to provide the technology to global customers. Designed and manufactured in Luton, UK, BriteCloud is readily exportable, with the 55 and 218 variants compatible with the majority of combat aircraft types. As the launch partner for BriteCloud, Saab continues to offer the system as an EW option with all models of the GRIPEN aircraft, including the new GRIPEN E.