Air superiority is an essential prerequisite for the success of future mission scenarios. Enormous technology leaps lead to rapidly growing, cross-domain and increasingly complex threat scenarios. In order to meet this demand, the initiative to develop a European defence system, the so-called Future Combat Air System, was born. It is supposed to become the future European air combat system and faces the challenge of networking the individual components to provide an overall system of manned and unmanned platforms. The Future Combat Air System is composed of the following components:
Next Generation Fighter (NGF)
The Next Generation Fighter is a sixth-generation fighter capable of networking with unmanned components. In conjunction with the Remote Carrier, it forms the Next Generation Weapon System (NGWS).
Remote Carrier (RC)
Remote Carrier in different weight classes represent multipliers for the operational effectiveness of the NGWS network. A Loyal Wingman is a large system which directly supports the NGF and which is reusable. Light and Heavy Remote Carrier (LRC/HRC) are similar to classical cruise missiles and can be modularly equipped depending on the operational scenario. They can be used in an air-surface role for electronic warfare, reconnaissance purposes and further missions.
Air Combat Cloud (ACC)
The Future Combat Air System is completed by the Air Combat Cloud which connects the Next Generation Fighter with the Remote Carrier as well as already existing legacy platforms. This allows data exchange in real time and thus ensures information superiority.
Future Combat Mission System (FCMS)
With the Future Combat Mission System, decision chains with flexible and powerful sensors, processing systems and effectors will be embedded in the network of the overall airborne system of manned and unmanned platforms, carriers and command and control systems. This is how the so-called Combat Cloud is achieved and successfully guarantees missions as a complex overall system.
The FCMS industrial consortium with the German companies Hensoldt Sensors GmbH, Diehl Defence GmbH & Co. KG, ESG Elektroniksystem- und Logistik-GmbH and Rohde & Schwarz GmbH & Co. KG, bundles essential core competencies of the national key technologies under one roof exactly for this purpose. FCMS offers broad and technologically profound national technology know-how for the FCAS/NGWS programme and thus ensures the required national ability to contribute and future-proof in the field of 6th Generation Mission Systems.
The overarching goal is to implement the functionality of the networked sensor and effector systems in a platform-independent manner and to be able to use them in real joint and combined operations.
Within this consortium, Diehl Defence covers all areas of expertise from target location to target engagement and contributes knowledge in the fields of sensor technology and armament of NGF and RC. In addition, Diehl Defence is involved in the handling of national research topics, such as networking, sensor and data fusion, artificial intelligence and image processing.
ENABLING AIR POWER IN NETWORKED OPERATIONS
Connected systems. Combined forces. Joint industries.