By Arie Egozi
Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) has launched OPAL, an innovative solution that connects between all platforms in the battle arena, manned and unmanned alike.
OPAL is based on forming a decentralized communication cloud for all members on the ground, in the air, and at sea, to allow real time information sharing. This allows all members to exchange relevant information in order to achieve a comprehensive operational picture of the battlefield.
According to IAI, OPAL relies on a secure and proven communication network that connects different networks and platforms without fixed base stations. OPAL is compatible with any platform, including advanced fighter aircrafts, tanks, ships or ground troops.
The OPAL solution provides an unprecedented range of proven capabilities and operational flexibility, which allows for optimal utilization of the available resources to maximize effectiveness for a wide range of missions. OPAL is installed in variety of advanced fighters, attack helicopters, refueling aircrafts, UAVs, ships, Command and Control centers, as well as mobile and fixed base stations.
Yossi Melamed, Executive Vice President and General Manager of IAI’ s Aviation Group, said that OPAL provides comprehensive interoperability of communications and operational capabilities between air and ground forces, and serves as a force multiplier.
The Israeli company says that OPAL provides its users with several significant benefits. The first is an optimized effectiveness in accomplishing mission goals by generating and sharing a Common Operating Picture in real time; providing interoperability of 5th generation fighter aircraft with legacy platforms, maximized utilization of resources and the ability to execute multiple missions within a given timeframe.
The second one according to IAI is an improved survivability by sharing threat data with air and ground forces, to avoid entry into danger zones. Enhanced flight safety with the collision avoidance warning indications which alerts pilots of near-collision conditions and provides visual avoidance maneuvers. This capability has saved numerous lives in recent years.
The third benefit is time and cost savings. IAI says that OPAL enables users to develop new operational capabilities and deploy them rapidly without having to change hardware or aircraft avionics software blocks. This capability significantly reduces the time to introduce new capabilities on the platforms from years to months.