Saab are displaying their Maritime Patrol Aircraft offering, the Swordfish, at UDT 2018. Let’s take a look.
Saab’s Swordfish maritime patrol aircraft is a combination of Bombardier’s Global 6000 ultra-long-range aircraft, General Dynamics Mission Systems Canada’s acoustics processor and Saab’s airborne surveillance solutions.
The maritime patrol aircraft design is equipped with up to four weapon hard points under the wings to carry anti-ship missiles, torpedoes and drop pods for search-and-rescue missions.
The Global 6000 configuration has a maximum cruise speed of 450kt and a long-range cruise speed of 360kt. It can operate over a range of 4,400nm.
According to Saab, the Swordfish comes with a range of customisable options:
- AESA 360° multi-mode radar
- Multi-statics acoustic system
- HD quality EO/IR (electro-optical/infrared systems) sensor with integrated laser payload
- SATCOM and tactical data links
- Four weapon hard points
- MAD (magnetic anomaly detector) boom
“Saab understands every mission that the modern MPA will be called upon to perform and we know how to deliver success. That is why we carefully selected the Bombardier Global 6000 aircraft for our airborne surveillance solutions. It brings a perfect balance of operational performance and cost, and is ideally suited to demanding, multi-level MPA operations.
Although an MPA has to be able to handle many different missions, airborne anti-submarine warfare remains the core competence of any credible MPA. General Dynamic Mission Systems-Canada heritage as the premier supplier of acoustic processors to aircraft means that Swordfish can locate, track and classify all submarine types,” says Lars Tossman, Head of Airborne Surveillance at Saab.
“The Swordfish initiative and the Global 6000 aircraft are truly a perfect match,” says Stéphane Leroy, Vice President of Specialised Aircraft at Bombardier.
“The redundancy built into the baseline Global 6000 aircraft – such as the four variable frequency generators as well as an auxiliary power unit and RAM air turbine generator – ensures safety and reliability on MPA missions. Other features, such as the revolutionary Bombardier Vision flight deck, reduce pilot workload for a safer, more efficient experience and the head-up display and MultiScan weather radar provide comfort, control and enhanced situational awareness for pilots.
Most importantly, its advanced and flexible wing design contributes to a smooth ride, reducing the effects of turbulence on both the crew and on-board equipment. These features are very important when one considers the Swordfish can stay on station for over 11 hours at 200 nautical miles from base.”