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Canada adopts Swiss low-level air defence system

M113 mounted ADATS system M113 mounted ADATS system.

ADATS is a low-level short range air defence system, capable of engaging both air and surface targets. Originally, it was designed and manufactured by Oerlikon Contraves based in Zurich, Switzerland.

ADATS is in service as part of the Canadian Forces Low-Level Air Defence System. The first system was delivered in 1988. 36 systems were delivered, ending in 1994. A mid-life update programme is planned.

The ADATS Missile System can be mounted on a variety of mobile platforms, such as the M113 and M3 Bradley. For the Canadian CFLLADS, it is mounted on the M113 armoured vehicle. It is also available in a shelter-based version for fixed and in a palletised version, which can be integrated with the Oerlikon Contraves Skyshield Air Defence System.

In September 2005, the Canadian Forces announced the design and development of 33 Multi-Mission Effects Vehicles (MMEV), to be based on ADATS. The MMEV will combine anti-tank and air-defence capabilities on one platform and will be able to engage ground targets such as armoured vehicles and bunkers, as well as aircraft, helicopters, unmanned aerial vehicles and cruise missiles. The vehicle is being developed by the Canadian Forces with Rheinmetall Canada and Defence R&D Canada.

As well as the ADATS missile, the MMEV will be able to fire a long-range anti-armour missile and a non-line-of-sight missile. New command posts with new battle management, command, control, communications, computers and information systems will also be developed. The MMEV will also be equipped with new 3D radar and infrared sighting systems.

Following the SDD phase, three prototypes and then an initial six vehicles will be produced. Full production of the MMEV fleet is planned to begin in 2010.

The ADATS network coordinates the fire power of up to six ADATS spaced at distances up to 20km. Any ADATS can be the network master controller and the network can link with other command facilities in real time.

Fully automatic real-time data exchange includes airspace control data, weapon control orders and fire control orders, target identification data, individual system status and vehicle position, threat prioritisation and optimised weapon allocation, engagement status, weapon status and jammer triangulation data.

The six-unit network can engage up to 48 air or ground targets.

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