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Leonardo to study Typhoon friend-or-foe capability under U.K. program

By Geoff Ziezulewicz
Leonardo-Finmeccanica is working on a new technology demonstrator program with the U.K. Ministry of Defense regarding the Eurofighter Typhoon's Identification Friend or Foe, or IFF, system, the company announced Tuesday. Photo courtesy Royal Air Force
Leonardo-Finmeccanica is working on a new technology demonstrator program with the U.K. Ministry of Defense regarding the Eurofighter Typhoon's Identification Friend or Foe, or IFF, system, the company announced Tuesday. Photo courtesy Royal Air Force

FARNBOROUGH, England, July 13 (UPI) -- Leonardo-Finmeccanica is working on a new technology demonstrator program with the U.K. Ministry of Defense regarding the Eurofighter Typhoon's identification friend-or-foe, or IFF, system, the company announced Tuesday.

The program will study the benefits Typhoon would gain from a new electronically scanning IFF system that also meets the latest and most secure standards, Leonardo said in a statement.

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It will also prepare the jet for future technology insertion.

Leonardo already provides such systems for platforms such as the Saab Gripen E.

An IFF system allows pilots to recognize other friendly vehicles and identify potential threats.

An electronically scanning IFF system would be able to interact with the E-Scan 'Captor-E' radar currently under development, Leonardo said. The IFF's arrays would be able to look in a different direction to the Typhoon's radar, allowing the pilot to use the radar to queue-up targets for subsequent identification.

The current Typhoon system is due for upgrades to meet new civilian air traffic regulations in 2017 and new military regulations in 2019.

The initial phase of the MOD program will prepare the Typhoon to meet these needs.

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