Move away from “pod-centric” solutions to more “pilot-centric” technologies
Thales promoted what it has described as the only European-manufactured airborne multi-function targeting pod (MTP) at the Paris Air Show this week as part of its Optronics Innovation Laboratory concept demonstration.
Speaking to MONS, Thales’ product line manager for airborne optronics, Bruno Depardon, explained how the ATP illustrated the company’s move away from “pod-centric” solutions to more “pilot-centric” technologies.
The next-generation MTP has been designed as an enhancement of the company’s own DAMOCLES MTP, which remains in service globally. However, the French Air Force is currently expecting its first deliveries of TALIOS during 2018, Depardon confirmed.
Designed for air to surface and air to air missions, as well as Non Traditional Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (NTISR) operations, TALIOS comprises a modular design including High Definition Infrared and TV colour cameras designed to tackle long range scenarios as well as close air support serials.
The solution features an IR camera operating in the 3-5nm band; with field of view ranging from 24×18 degrees down to 1×0.75 degrees in narrow configuration. The TALIOS TV colour camera operates between 0.35 and 0.9nm with field of view options including 0.77×0.58 and 7×5.5 degrees.
An eye safe laser rangefinding device, operating at a wavelength of 1.5nm is also available as well as a laser designator operating at 1.06nm. The payload also features a multi-channel HD digital recorder and ARINC 818 Digital Video Output system.
In the air to ground role, TALIOS is compatible with a variety of laser guided weapons and can also conduct battle damage assessments and target recognition; while in the air to air role, it can be used for both day and night target identification missions.
In Paris, Thales illustrated how TALIOS software provided a pilot with the capacity to view live inset imagery (IR or TV camera) within a main view of the alternative sensor, providing him/her with the optimised view of a target area.
Other features illustrated included Multi-Criteria Tracking; integration of Lethality Circles; and Moving Target Detection modes, Depardon highlighted.
Designed with operational scenarios experienced during coalition campaigns in Afghanistan over the past decade, the TALIOS payload is designed to optimise pilot situation awareness in order to deliver the most efficient and effective combat identification missions with maximum mobility across the battlespace, Depardon highlighted.