Israel defense contractor Elbit Systems Ltd. said Thursday it has won a framework contract to provide maritime unmanned aircraft system (UAS) patrol services to the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA), to help monitor vast swaths of sea and long coastlines and identify suspicious activities and potential hazards.
The European agency services countries in the European Union.
The contract, which will be executed together with Portugal-based engineering firm Centre of Engineering and Product Development (CEiiA), is for a two-year period, with an option for additional two, single years. The full value of the contract, including the options, is €59 million (some $68 million).
Under the contract and in cooperation with CEiiA, Elbit will lease and operate its Hermes 900 Maritime Patrol system — a long-range unmanned surveillance system tailored for the sea and coastlines — and its ground control station.
The system will be equipped with maritime radar, an electro-optic payload, satellite communication and an automatic identification system (AIS) receiver, Elbit said in a statement.
“Having been selected by the European Union authorities is yet another vote of confidence in the Hermes 900 by following additional contract awards for this UAS in Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America and Israel,” said Elad Aharonson, general manager of Elbit Systems ISTAR Division, in the statement.
Elbit is a tech firm that develops a wide range of defense, homeland security and commercial systems that are sold globally. The firm, whose shares are listed in Tel Aviv and on the Nasdaq, operates in the fields of aerospace, land and naval systems, command, control, communications, computers, intelligence surveillance and reconnaissance systems, among others.
Hermes 900 is our next-generation multi-role MALE UAS. It features over-the-horizon, persistent multi-mission, multi-payload capabilities with a class-leading payload carrying capacity of 350 kg.
Hermes 900 is capable of performing missions for area dominance and persistent ISTAR (intelligence, surveillance, target acquisition and reconnaissance)..
Hermes 900 can also be utilized for ground support and maritime patrol missions, as well as for integrated multi-platform, multi-sensor operations.
Based on the heritage of over 300,000 operational flight hours of the Hermes 450 UAS, the Hermes 900 employs identical building blocks using a larger air vehicle with nearly double the performance.
Hermes 900 incorporates flexible, cutting-edge, multi-payload configurations.
The system employs standard and long-range EO/IR/laser, SAR / GMTI & MPR, COMINT/DF, COMINT GSM, COMMJAM, ELINT, EW, hyperspectral systems, large area scanning systems, wide area persistent surveillance and other payloads.
Mission management is performed in a highly autonomous manner via the Hermes ground control system (GCS) designed to control combined Hermes 900 and Hermes 450 missions. Hermes 900 can perform two concurrent missions from the same GCS using two ground data terminals (GDT). Hermes 900 is the most recent MALE UAS procured by the IDF as well as by multiple international customers.
Hermes 900 Performance:
Take-off Weight – 1,180 kg
Max Payload – 350 kg
Endurance – up to 36 hours
Service Ceiling – 30,000 ft.