At the DSEI 2019 exhibition, Leonardo will unveil two new additions to its GUARDIAN range of Counter-Improvised Explosive Device (C-IED) products, offering improved survivability for ground forces. The New GUARDIAN HR and GUARDIAN HFE have been developed in response to the emerging techniques and technologies which are starting to be employed by insurgent and terrorist groups. The two new variants are at a high technology readiness level and are available to order now for deliveries in 2020.
Leonardo’s GUARDIAN family of systems protect ground troops from the widespread threat of remotely-activated Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs). These cheaply made and often low-tech remotely-controlled bombs represent a deadly threat to ground forces. In response, the GUARDIAN family uses advanced jamming technologies to block the signals used to detonate the devices. Designed and manufactured in the UK, the products have been battle-proven on operations in combat zones such as Northern Ireland, Iraq, Afghanistan and Syria, saving many lives.
The two new versions of GUARDIAN have been created in response to enemy forces’ attempts to bypass current C-IED technology by modifying their methods of triggering Improvised Explosive Devices. The GUARDIAN HFE (High Frequency Extension) is an upgrade to the in-service Guardian H3, or to any other frequency limited C-IED equipment, which gives the system the ability to block the higher-frequency signals used by some mobile phone devices. The HFE system was successfully trialled by the Italian Army in June. Meanwhile, the Guardian HR is an all-new version of the system which brings two new features into the GUARDIAN toolbox. The first, responsive jamming, focuses power against a specific threat signal instead of using a barrage of lower power jamming energy. The other new feature is a software-configurable architecture, which adds an extra level of flexibility to the GUARDIAN system by allowing it to be updated/configured via software download in response to new threats, similar to how you might install an app on a mobile phone. Currently, both of the new systems are available as vehicle-mounted equipment and Leonardo is also developing a portable ‘manpack’ version of the GUARDIAN HR which is expected to be ready in 2020.