BAE Systems Avionics has been picked by the UK Ministry of Defence to lead the covert night/day operations for the rotorcraft II (Condor) technology demonstration project.

The deal is thought to be worth £7 million ($11.3 million) and will lead to a demonstrator in 12 to 14 months. This may be a UK Army Westland Lynx, although the tender required the bidders to provide costs for a non-military test platform.

Condor II will integrate systems and capabilities, either just entering or about to enter service, says a BAE source. He adds that helicopters typically lag some way behind fixed-wing aircraft in terms of technology insertion.

Technology to be included in Condor II includes synthetic vision systems and laser vision sensors to detect wires and other hazards to safety in nap-of-the-earth flying. The technical solutions derived from Condor II must be applicable to all the UK's military helicopter types.

Source: Flight International