Sagem Défense Sécurité Transforms Danish UAVs for Canadian Forces
Sagem Défense Sécurité Transforms Danish UAVs for Canadian
Source: Sagem DS,
Paris, September 1, 2006.
The Canadian Ministry of Defence has just awarded Sagem
Défense Sécurité (SAFRAN Group) a contract to standardize Danish Army Sperwer
tactical UAV systems according to Canadian specifications.
A flight of CU-161
Sperwer, Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV), operating from Kandahar Airfield, began keeping watch over South
Afghanistan, 9 March 2006. The Sperwer is sent deep into hostile territory where
it would be extremely dangerous to send a helicopter. The Canadian artillery
also fly the plane from a mobile ground control station and operate the
Sperwer’s high-tech camera, side-by-side with 408 Tactical helicopter Squadron’s
Bombardier Jean-Francois Paré (far left), a member of the
artillery flies the CU-161 Sperwer, Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV), from a mobile
ground control station while Bombardier Karin Khoudja (foreground) operates the
Sperwer’s high-tech camera. Captain Clay Rook (far right) is a Canadian Forces
pilot and as the UAV mission commander he is responsible for planning the
flights, ensuring that the airspace and fire support measures are clear and
supervises the ground control station activities. Photo by Sergeant Carole
Deployed in the Kandahar region since March 2006, the Sperwer
system has proven its operational effectiveness on a daily basis in the Canadian
forces’ missions to stabilize the country under harsh engagement conditions in a
theater completely lacking in infrastructure. This is the second deployment of
Canadian Sperwer following a first successful mission in 2003 as part of the
As proof of Canada’s confidence in the Sperwer system, the
program will consist of configuring the software and the equipment of the Danish
systems (ground units and aircraft) in accordance with the Canadian ones.
Transferring these Danish UAVs will allow Canada to quickly
double its fleet of Sperwer tactical UAVs.
Developed by Sagem Défense Sécurité and manufactured in its
Montlucon, France, factory, the Sperwer UAV is a remote-controlled aircraft with
a 4.2-meter wingspan, carrying a highly powerful, gyrostabilized optronic
payload. With autonomy of six hours, they are launched by catapult and can be
used both day and night.
Fully developed and manufactured in France, the Sperwer
system is in service in five countries: Canada, France, Greece, the Netherlands
and Sweden. It is the European benchmark in tactical UAVs.
Sagem Défense Securité is a high-technology company in the
SAFRAN Group. As a leading European defense and security electronics company
in Europe, its business covers three main fields: navigation and aeronautics
systems, where it is the world leader in helicopter flight control; optronics
and air-land systems, where it is the European leader in surveillance and
fire-control optronics; and the field of security, where it is the world
leader in fingerprint-based biometrics. Its equipment and integrated systems
are used worldwide, helping to ensure air transport safety, secure data
transmission, personal security and governmental defense capabilities at the
highest level. Through the SAFRAN Group, Sagem Défense Sécurité is present on
all continents. For further information:
Brigadier-General David Fraser, Commander of 1 Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group
(Edmonton, Alta.), is the Commander of the Canadian-led Multi National Brigade
for Regional Command South (MNB RC (South) in Afghanistan. He is responsible
for Canadian and ISAF operations, leading a force of about 6,000 soldiers from
Canada and seven other nations including: the United Kingdom, the Netherlands,
the U.S., Australia, Denmark, Romania, and Estonia. He will turn over command to
the Netherlands in November 2006. Overall 2,000 CF personnel support the ISAF
mission. Among them, a Tactical Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Unit comprised primarily
of personnel from 408 Tactical Helicopter Squadron based in Edmonton, AB, and 5e
Régiment d'artillerie légère du Canada based in Valcartier, PQ. The Canadian Forces
(CF) contribution in Afghanistan to the
International Security Assistance Force (ISAF): approximately 2000 CF personnel,
most of whom serve with Task Force Afghanistan at Kandahar
Airfield and Camp Nathan Smith in Kandahar City. Additional personnel are
assigned to various military headquarters, a support base, and civilian
organizations. Among them operates a Tactical Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Unit comprised primarily of personnel from
408 Tactical Helicopter Squadron based in Edmonton, AB, and 5e Régiment
d'artillerie légère du Canada based in Valcartier, PQ.
Source: Department of National defence,
Canadian Forces Website.
Photos by Sergeant Carole Morissette,
Imagery Technician, Task Force Afghanistan (2 Apr 2006).