French-based contractor Thales Airborne Systems used the 22-28 July Farnborough International Air Show to showcase its latest airborne electronic warfare (EW) product, the Compact Airborne Threat Surveyor (CATS).

Operating within the E- to K-band (2 to 40 GHz) frequency band, CATS is a combined radar warning, electronic support (ES) and EW suite management system that is designed for use in helicopter, unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) and transport aircraft applications.

As such, it provides real-time battlespace awareness, radar threat warning and alert, an ES capability with a data recording facility and real-time sensor-to-shooter target geo-location data. System components include a processor unit and up to six antenna modules and the system as a whole makes use of Thales' proprietary phase measurement threat localisation technique.

CATS can be installed as either a stand-alone unit or in an integrated configuration that is compatible with glass cockpits and UAV navigation/data link systems. In its stand-alone format, the system is used with a kneeboard or a dedicated cockpit colour display that has provision for interfacing with the host platform's mission and avionic systems. Other system features include a user programmable software library and built-in test.

Equipment weight is given as 15 kg (without display) and at the time of its announcement, it is believed that in the first instance, Thales was pushing CATS for installation on platforms such as the pan-European NH-90 helicopter and A400M next generation transport aircraft.