The United Arab Emirates’ (UAE) economy relies heavily on the security and uninterrupted flow of maritime operations. Oil exports are the economic basis of the country. Energy infrastructures at sea, on land, and on long transportation lines are exposed to threats. The urban centers and critical infrastructures are also located along the shoreline. The country operates large commercial ports that serve extensive maritime trade, which is also a target for attacks
The maritime theater is a significant part of IAI’s portfolio, dealing with the whole range of missions at sea.
maritime security, defense, force projection, self-protection of ships at sea, surface and underwater operations, securing offshore facilities, and protection of coastal areas. IAI offer unique solutions for the operational needs required in global markets and regards its maritime activity as a significant growth engֹine for the future.
IAI focuses its maritime activity on several vectors: Maritime Situational Awareness (MSA), Offensive and Defensive weapon systems, and Autonomous technologies. MSA is creating and sharing the maritime situational picture as a basis for control of maritime sovereignty and naval operations. MSA is a critical capability in naval operations, as naval forces face ever-growing threats. IAI provides the solutions for these needs – from maritime search, target detection, and simultaneous tracking of thousands of targets, filtering, and prioritization of information, to alerting and responding to any suspicious event.
MSA is generated by a system of systems based entirely on IAI’s proven technologies – beginning with information received from satellites in space, from radars staring hundreds of miles beyond the horizon, electro-optical and electronic sensors operating on ships, maritime surveillance airplanes, and UAVs, complemented by commercial data-based information systems. All these information feeds are streamed to the MSA processing core, creating the situational picture. The information streams are processed and fused using the most advanced computer vision, artificial intelligence, and machine learning to create a comprehensive, detailed, and updated situational picture that can be shared among all stakeholders.
Another aspect of MSA is wide-area surveillance against air threats to provide Naval vessels and Maritime Infrastructure Air and Missile Defense. This is precisely what the Barak MX air defense system does. The system provides air and missile defense for naval and land-based forces and is operational with the Israeli Navy and foreign armies and navies.
Combat suites for naval and patrol vessels are another facet of IAI’s expertise. Most of the systems used in such suites are based on advanced technologies developed and manufactured in-house; many are considered among the world’s most advanced. Integration is highly efficient, using modern open systems architecture. This architecture also enables the integration of external systems and capabilities when required for the mission or the customer’s request. An example of this integrated combat suite is the Israel
Navy Sa’ar 6 corvette, which has a full integration of radars, offensive and defensive weapons, and other capabilities.
IAI also invest in autonomy in all domains, air and land. This activity addresses the platforms, sensors, autonomy technologies and user interfaces that make such unmanned systems work. These remotely controlled platforms use partial autonomy or full autonomy on missions, including vehicles that go on independent missions and return to their base without operator involvement
There is a lot of interest in the Emirates in these capabilities, especially in autonomous and unmanned missions. At IDEX 2023, IAI and ADSB unveiled a joint Israeli – Emirati activity – the development of the KATANA unmanned surface vessel (USV). Two versions of the USV ship were on display – a patrol ship designed for maritime security missions and a mine-warfare USV equipped with sonars and counter-mine techniques. IAI provided the autonomy and integration of remotely controlled mission systems using the KATANA autonomy kit on the vessels designed and built by ADSB.
IAI is adapting to recent conflicts and threats in the naval arena, working with industry partners, customers, and navies in Israel and abroad. Following the signing of the Abraham Accords in 2020, Israel has established relations with countries in the region. This collaboration allows for a better understanding of developing regional challenges in the naval arena, new needs, and opportunities for improvement, which position the company to prepare and respond to customer needs facing future challenges.