Leonardo DRS to debut new short-range air defense system next week

The modern battlefield has become a complex theater of threats, from powerful anti-armor and anti-aircraft missiles to small but lethal unmanned aircraft that can quietly locate troops or swarm targets, to a variety of low-flying and heavily armed aircraft. Leonardo DRS offers modern short-range air defense solution for the U.S. Army and developed the new air defense system.

U.S. defense contractor Leonardo DRS will take the opportunity at the Association of the United States Army’s (AUSA’s) annual conference to unveil the first prototype of the Initial-Maneuver-Short Range Air Defense vehicle (IM-SHORAD). Leonardo DRS will display air and missile defense Stryker variant with the IM-SHORAD mission equipment package.

IM-SHORAD is designed to provide 360-degree air defense protection of the Stryker and Armor Brigade Combat Teams (BCT) throughout the range of military operations. Air and missile defense is one of Army modernization priorities. The new mobile air defense systems need to provide a capability to fill the lack of air defense in current maneuver formations against air threats encountered to include: rotary wing, fixed-wing, and Unmanned Aerial Systems.

IM-SHORAD, mounted on a Stryker, applies an open mission command architecture approach integrating the Sentinel Radar, Forward Area Air Defense – Command and Control, a Stinger Vehicle Universal Launcher, M299 Launcher, and Line of Sight radios on a vehicle platform. The system can interoperate with the fielded Air Defense Interrogator and Blue Force Tracker systems.

The recently signed requirements document for Maneuver SHORAD calls for a vehicle such as a Stryker A-1 variant with a 50-caliber automatic weapon or 30mm cannon on top, along with a pod of missiles, and eventually a 50kw laser.

The company’s website said that with Leonardo DRS’ mission equipment package, as part of the IM-SHORAD capability, Warfighters possess the ability to maneuver at the tactical level with a complete detect, identify, track and defeat capability which defeats UAS, rotary-wing and fixed-wing threats. By employing precision ground-to-ground and ground-to-air lethality, the Warfighter truly owns the edge.

In a recent notice posted on the Federal Business Opportunities website, the service asked industry proposals in regards to an ability to deliver 144 IM-SHORAD systems with deliveries beginning in the fiscal year 2020 and final deliveries in 2024.

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