France qualifies its future vehicle-mounted C-IED system
The French Ministry of Defence’s armament procurement agency, the Direction Générale de l'Armement (DGA) recently completed qualification testing of the BARAGE (Brouilleur Actif et Réactif avec GoniométriE) smart vehicle-mounted wideband counter-IEDs system developed by Thales Communications & Security.
The hybrid active/reactive inhibition system commercially designated as Eclipse (as well as TRC 6274HJ) is built around a new-generation jammer that prevents improvised explosive devices from being detonated by remote control. The moment an IED is detected, it jams radio signals across a wide range of frequencies without interfering with the radio communication systems used by friendly forces.
It provides full band coverage between 20-250 MHz with option to up to 6000 MHz, and offers scalable and modular open architecture that allow to expand the defensive capabilities by adding new functions to the system as threats evolve, four independent transmitters, embedded capability with combat net radio system, easy vehicle installation, and spectrum sensing capacity. It accept input voltage range of 18-36V.
The BARAGE electronic protection system will equip vehicles procured by the DGA as part of the SCORPION (Synergie du COntact Renforcé par la Polyvalence et l’InfovalorisatiON) programme. Specifically, the system will fit Griffon and Jaguar 6x6 armoured vehicles being developed by a temporary consortium formed by Nexter Systems, Renault Trucks Defense and Thales as part of the contract awarded by the DGA in December 2014, as well as the Leclerc main battle tanks being modernised by Nexter Systems to the Leclerc Rénové (XLR) standard. Eventually, BARAGE will provide protection to VBMR Léger 4x4 (Véhicule Blindé Multi-Rôle) multirole light tactical vehicles and VBAE (Véhicule Blindé d'Aide à l'Engagement) fire support vehicles to be purchased by the DGA, and could be retained for the future planned modernisation of Nexter Systems VBCI (Véhicule Blindé de Combat d’Infanterie) 8x8 infantry fighting vehicles.
It was already purchased by other nations for vehicles. ECLIPSE can be extended to dismounted soldiers via a portable lightweight terminal.
It understood that more than 2000 of the inhibitors will be received, as the French Army is scheduled to receive 1722 Griffons, 248 Jaguars and 200 XLR vehicles over the two phases of SCORPION programme. The ambitious SCORPION programme will be implemented between 2014 a 2025, and between 2023 and 2035 respectively. It is aimed at renewing the major items of equipment of the French Army’s Combined Arms Battlegroups, the GTIAs (Groupements Tactiques Interarmes).