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Germany’s Hensoldt to deliver IFF radars for Israeli air defense systems

IFF Mode 5 radars
Photo: Hensoldt

ELTA Systems Ltd, a subsidiary of Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), has contracted German sensor solutions specialist Hensoldt for the delivery of its identification-friend-or-foe (IFF) products for IAI air defense systems.

Hensoldt said it received several contracts worth approximately 10 million euros to deliver a number of MSSR 2000 ID and MSR1000I secondary radars including test equipment.

The IFF systems working according to the Mode 5 NATO standard will be integrated into civil air traffic control radars as well as military air defense radars operated by several customer nations.

Military IFF systems, like civil air traffic control radars called secondary surveillance radars (SSR), precisely identify aircraft by automatically sending interrogation signals which are answered by so-called transponders on-board friendly aircraft. Thus, IFF enables field commanders to distinguish friendly from hostile forces and helps avoiding friendly fire incidents.

Unlike the older Mode 4, Mode 5 employs sophisticated encryption techniques to avoid hostile signal manipulation, thus ensuring that the identification process is absolutely reliable and secure. “Mode 5” is in the process of being introduced in all western armies as a precondition of joint operations of US/NATO and allied forces.

This is the latest in a series of Mode 5 IFF contracts Hensoldt has secured so far. It is under contract to upgrade German, French and UK armed forces’ IFF systems to the “Mode 5” standard and has delivered IFF systems – including crypto devices – for ground and naval applications of several NATO nations.

Among others, the company’s equipment is deployed on all German Navy ships as well as several UK Royal Navy ships. Hensoldt says it has more than 700 IFF systems under contract in 42 nations.