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Hensoldt to equip Royal Navy Fleet Solid Support ships with Quadome radar.

| Naval News Navy 2024

According to a PR published by Hensoldt on May 2, 2024, sensor solutions provider HENSOLDT UK has been selected by Navantia UK to deliver essential systems to the UK Royal Fleet Auxiliary’s (RFA) three new Fleet Solid Support (FSS) ships.
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Artist rendering of the future Fleet Solid Support. (Picture source: Hensoldt)

These vessels will feature the Quadome Naval 3D Air and Surface Surveillance Radar, Air Traffic Management (ATM) systems, and Kelvin Hughes Integrated Navigation Bridge Systems (INBS). The FSS ships will be crucial in supporting the Royal Navy's Queen Elizabeth Class aircraft carriers during replenishment operations.

HENSOLDT will supply its new-generation Quadome 3D Air and Surface Surveillance radar, which incorporates the latest software-defined active electronically scanned array (AESA) technology. This provides a future-proof solution with a longer operational lifespan. The radar offers an exceptional balance of price and performance, achieving high levels of small target detection, volume tracking, and mission systems interaction typically seen only in more expensive radar systems.

Operational benefits include simultaneous 3D Air and Surface Surveillance with multiple specialist modes. The Quadome radar is designed for ease of operation and maintenance, reducing training requirements and skill demands.

The Quadome radar also features an integrated IFF (Identification Friend or Foe) antenna, which will interface with the HENSOLDT MSSR 2000 IFF interrogator already in use by the UK Royal Navy and RFA. Additionally, a comprehensive ATM display solution is included in the contract.

HENSOLDT UK will also provide Kelvin Hughes INBS, including SharpEye naval navigation radars and multifunction displays. The INBS is customizable to meet specific operational and technical needs, offering redundancy and security options with a seamless open interface to other ship systems. Multifunction displays streamline navigation tasks, such as radar, charts, helicopter control, and Conning Display.

The Kelvin Hughes INBS and SharpEye radars are already operational on the RFA Tide Class tankers and other RFA ships. This commonality allows optimized training, spares, and support across the RFA fleet, minimizing through-life costs for the Ministry of Defence (MOD) while maximizing crew flexibility. HENSOLDT UK will design, construct, test, and provide lifelong support for the INBS from its Enfield headquarters.

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