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The United States Air Force's (USAF) activities to establish air superiority and support ground combat units often require the use of secure airfields in remote and challenging areas. Thales Deployable – Instrument Landing System (D-ILS), a compact and movable variant of the standard ILS, can help them accomplish this mission.
Over the last three years, Thales has received three orders from the USAF under the D-ILS contract. These orders allowed Thales to deliver a total of five D-ILS used by the USAF for initial testing and evaluation. The first Production Unit (PU) was scheduled to be delivered to the Air Force before 2019. Under the program, the Air Force plans to purchase an additional 28 Production Units bringing the total deployable complement to 34. These systems will be used in airfield environments where the ability to provide precision guidance to aircraft on final approach during low visibility or low-ceiling weather conditions is critical while also being able to quickly set-up, activate, break-down and relocate the systems.
Thales D-ILS will provide the equivalent of fixed-based instrument landing system capability at tactical airfields and in harsh environments such as areas of natural disaster or humanitarian relief efforts. Thales D-ILS is based on the commercial-off-the-shelf Thales ILS 420 – the next generation fixed-based, dual frequency ILS. The D-ILS system can be easily transported via truck, rail or transport aircraft and quickly deployed. More than 700 fixed-base systems have been chosen worldwide for civil and military applications. In fact, Thales currently deploys over 99 percent of the instrument landing systems at U.S. airports, and an installed base of over 11,000 navigation aids deployed around the world.
Thales Deployable ILS have already been deployed in Italy, Qatar and Mexico.
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