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Leonardo unveils new COMINT system
King Air 350 equipped with Spider. © Leonardo

Leonardo unveils new COMINT system

Leonardo has unveiled a new Electronic Warfare (EW) communications intelligence (COMINT) product, called ‘Spider’, designed to provide high-end COMINT features at a significantly reduced cost compared to competing systems.

Leonardo has unveiled a new Electronic Warfare (EW) communications intelligence (COMINT) product, called ‘Spider’, named after the eight Radio Frequency (RF) antennas contained within the system. Spider is able to intercept and analyse enemy communications in real time.

Spider has been developed to provide high-end COMINT features at a significantly reduced cost compared to competing systems.

By automatically detecting and tracking targets, Spider can present operators with an in-depth picture of the activities of hostile forces, giving commanders the ability to monitor hostile forces’ intent and location utilising Spider’s built-in geolocation technology.

Trials of Spider have been conducted in 2018 and first deliveries are scheduled for 2019. Designed and manufactured in the UK, Spider is readily exportable.

The Spider antenna array weighs less than 20kg fitting inside a 1.5 x 0.5 x 0.5m pod, allowing it to be installed on a range of platforms including surveillance aircraft such as the King Air 350, Medium-Altitude Long-Endurance (MALE) remotely-piloted air systems and larger aircraft such as Leonardo’s ATR 72MP.

Spider can be combined with Leonardo’s SAGE Electronic Surveillance Measures/electronic intelligence (ESM/ELINT) system to provide a full signals intelligence (SIGINT) capability through a single mission interface. COMINT and ELINT data can be presented through a single graphical user interface which allows mission commander overview or dedicated COMINT and ELINT analysis.

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