IAI's ELTA, Embraer to launch P600 airborne early warning system

The cost-effective solution has been unveiled at the Paris airshow.

P600 Airborne Early Warning (AEW)  (photo credit: IAI)
P600 Airborne Early Warning (AEW)
(photo credit: IAI)
Israel Aerospace Industries subsidiary ELTA Systems signed a strategic cooperation agreement with Brazil’s Embraer Defense & Security to introduce the P600 Airborne Early Warning (AEW) system on their latest Praetor 600 business jet.
In the agreement signed at the Paris Air Show on Tuesday, Embraer will provide the Embraer Praetor 600 as well as ground support, communications systems and aircraft integration while ELTA will provide the AEW radar, SIGINT (Signals Intelligence) and other electronic systems and system integration.
“The P600 AEW addresses the growing market of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities for countries that require cost-effective, high performance and flexible solutions for defense and homeland security missions,” IAI said.
Launched in October 2018, the Embraer Praetor 600 has full fly-by-wire technology, a range of 7,400 km. and can take off from runways shorter than 1,500 meters. The advanced jet offers intercontinental range with an outstanding payload capability, high availability and reliability, short turn-around and low life cycle costs.
Jackson Schneider, president & CEO Embraer Defense & Security, was quoted saying that the aircraft “delivers superior performance and flexibility that translates into the greatest value proposition in its category. It can be easily configured to match the customer needs and it can perform a wide variety of missions in a very efficient and cost-effective way.”
The primary sensor of the P600 AEW is the IAI/ELTA 4th generation Digital Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar with integrated IFF (identification friend or foe, an electronic radio-based identification system) capabilities which will be mounted on top of the fuselage in a ski-box like pod.
Avishai Izhakian, deputy general manager, Airborne Systems and Radars Division at IAI, told The Jerusalem Post that the system has been used on more expensive aircraft such as the Gulfstream 550 in the past but with the introduction of Embaraer’s new aircraft, the company was able to gain access to a more cost-effective solution.
“This project is a major leap,” he said. “We have identified the need for a cost-effective solution for the AEW market, and we came up with a solution using assets of the two companies.”
The advanced small commercial platform with all of its support will be adapted by Embraer for military purposes.
“The main advantage is the fact that the business jet can fly very high – 40,000 feet, which allows them to fly above commercial aviation routes – and can detect very small targets flying at low heights at very far distances,” Izhakian said, explaining that the system can detect aerial targets hundreds of kilometers away.
The system can provide an extended air situational picture by monitoring aerial activity in areas outside ground radar coverage and can perform various missions such as air defense, early warning, command and control, fighter fleet efficiency, territorial defense, and maritime surveillance.
It can also be configured with the full range of AEW&C sensor and control systems, including the 4th generation Digital AESA AEW Radar, civil and military IFF, ESM/ELINT with radar warning receiver capability, command and control, comprehensive communication suite including data networks and satellite links, and a robust self protection suite (SPS).
According to IAI, the comprehensive communications suite allows for data link capability as well as satellite communication for operations beyond the line of sight data link. It also secures interoperability with allied forces.
“Network centric warfare  capability transforms the P600 AEW into a member of a tactical network. An advanced self-protection system performs the detection of potential threats activating any required electronic support measures,” IAI said.
“We are ramping up our collaborations with global business entities, leveraging the know-how and technology accumulated over decades of aerospace and defense operations. As the pioneers of the bizjet AEW, ELTA Systems has made large strides over the years toward offering cost-effective AEW capabilities for the growing and changing global needs,” said Yoav Tourgeman, ELTA president & IAI executive VP.