Hensoldt has signed an agreement with Israeli company Rafael Advanced Defence Systems to provide electronic warfare (EW) capabilities to the German Air Force (Luftwaffe).

The exclusive teaming agreement was signed between Hensoldt CEO Thomas Müller and Rafael president and CEO major general (retired) Yoav Har-Even in Tel Aviv, Israel on 18 October.

Under this partnership, the two companies will work together to enhance and mature Rafael’s Sky Shield airborne EW pod as an off-the-shelf escort jammer.

Work also includes integration of Sky Shield pod with Hensoldt’s airborne electronic attack (EA) technology Kalaetron Attack.

Introduced last year, the self-protection and signal intelligence system can be used against different enemy air defence radars.

Har-Even said: “Under the leadership of Hensoldt, these will come together synergistically to provide Luftwaffe with top-notch EW/EA capabilities, necessary to address current and future threats and challenges.”

The new system is being developed to offer a readily available, mature EW solution for the German Air Force, with initial operating capability expected in 2028.

Development of the new capability will further support the German Air Force’s plans to transform their Eurofighter Typhoon fleet into an EA aircraft. 

According to Hensoldt, the integration process of the new EA pod will use fewer resources, as the EA pod already uses existing combat-proven Litening Pod’s interfaces.

The joint effort will also support the integration and certification processes related to Eurofighter ’s adaption into an EA platform.

Müller said: “Based on these skills and supported by existing government-to-government agreements, we are able to offer the Luftwaffe a sovereign solution to timely capability transfer of ECR Tornado and, at the same time, to expand the capabilities of Eurofighter by an escort jamming solution proven in modern operational scenarios.”