Diehl Defence Unveils FEANIX Drone to Support European FCAS Program

World Defense

Diehl Defence Unveils FEANIX Drone to Support European FCAS Program

Diehl Defence introduces the FEANIX drone, an advanced unmanned aerial system designed to enhance military capabilities and support the European Future Combat Air System program.

German defense contractor Diehl Defence has launched its new Light Remote Carrier (LRC) unmanned aerial system, named FEANIX, at an aerospace trade convention in Berlin. The FEANIX drone, weighing approximately 300 kilograms (661 pounds) and measuring less than 4 meters (13 feet) long, is designed for both ground and sea deployment. Its modular design allows for customization based on the user’s payload requirements, integrating various sensors and effectors to suit different operational scenarios.

Key Features of FEANIX:

  • Modular Design: FEANIX's modularity allows it to be configured with different payloads, including sensors and both lethal and non-lethal effectors.
  • Swarming and Networking: The drone incorporates advanced swarming and networking capabilities, enhancing its operational effectiveness.
  • Stand-off Capabilities: These capabilities allow the drone to perform tasks from a distance, reducing risks to military personnel.

Development and Purpose:

Diehl Defence has been investing in self-financed research and development activities for remote carriers in missile systems. The FEANIX drone is part of this effort, aimed at closing an identified capability gap in the armed forces and expanding Diehl's product portfolio with a future-oriented approach.

Supporting the European FCAS Program:

The FEANIX drone is developed to reduce risks to military crews during airborne missions significantly. It will support the European Future Combat Air System (FCAS) program, which aims to develop a sixth-generation fighter jet, corresponding "wingman" remote carriers, and a modern weapon system. The FCAS program is a collaborative effort involving Germany, France, and Spain, with prime contractors Dassault Aviation, Airbus, and Indra leading the initiative.

A model of the French-German-Spanish FCAS aircraft was showcased at the 53rd Paris Air Show in 2019, highlighting the international cooperation in this ambitious project. Test flights for the FCAS program are expected to begin in 2027, with the solutions anticipated to enter service in the 2040s.

Current Status and Future Plans:

During the Berlin event, Airbus also revealed a full-scale model of its carrier drone offering for the FCAS program. Diehl Defence's FEANIX Project Lead, Alexander Brugger, confirmed that the company is negotiating with the German military to fund and produce the drone. The prototype is planned to be completed at Diehl’s Überlingen facility by 2028.

With the introduction of the FEANIX drone, Diehl Defence is taking significant steps to enhance military capabilities and contribute to the future of European defense technology.

Leave a Comment:
No comments available for this post.