Cooperative AEA Program Moves Forward


By Richard Scott

Germany, Italy and Spain have funded work to develop a European airborne electronic attack capability under the Responsive Electronic Attack for Cooperative Task (REACT) program.

European defense procurement agency OCCAR signed a Linked Procurement Contract with Indra, Elettronica and Hensoldt on March 24. The agreement assures national funding of the REACT project, which also benefits from a grant agreement managed directly by the European Commission.

Established under the European Defence Industrial Development Programme (EDIDP) 2019, the REACT project is intended to define an AEA capability and architecture that would enable EU member air forces to conduct operations in a contested anti-access/area denial environments. Although REACT is still in the concept phase, the ultimate goal is to develop an AEA system of systems based on podded escort jammers and unmanned stand-in jammers.

REACT is currently the subject of a 36-month concept study phase running through December 2023. The key focus is on evaluating candidate technologies through simulation and demonstration in order to reduce risk for engineering development.

Indra is serving as the REACT lead, acting as project coordinator and responsible for project management. The company is also leading on dissemination and exploitation of project outputs in coordination with the respective ministries of defense, the European Commission, and the project partners.

As well as Indra, Elettronica and Hensoldt, Sweden’s Saab is participating in the REACT project. OCCAR said that Saab would also become party to the contract “in the near future.”

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