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United Arab Emirates orders two additional SAAB GlobalEye airborne surveillance aircraft


According to a press release published on January 4, 2020, Saab has today received a follow-on contract with the United Arab Emirates regarding the sale of two GlobalEye systems, Saab’s advanced airborne surveillance system. The order value is USD 1.018 billion and the contract period is 2020-2025.

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United Arab Emirates order two additionnal SAAB GlobalEye airborne surveillance aircraft 925 001 SAAB GlobalEye of UAE Air Force. (Picture source Air Recognition)


The original contract with the United Arab Emirates for GlobalEye airborne early warning and control (AEW&C) aircraft was signed in 2015 at the Dubai Air Show. This contract is an amendment to that signed in 2015. A third aircraft was ordered in 2017.

GlobalEye is a multi-role airborne early warning & control (AEW&C) platform developed by the Swedish defense and security company SAAB. The GlobalEye is equipped with a suite of sensors using Saab's Erieye ER (Extended Range) radar and mission system. The aircraft is based on the Bombardier Global 6000 long-range business jet.

On 23 February 2018, Saab unveiled the first GlobalEye surveillance aircraft and its maiden flight was conducted in March 2018.

The primary sensor of the GlobalEye is its Erieye ER airborne early warning (AEW) radar; weighing approximately 1 tonne, it is mounted atop the twinjet's fuselage which has a range of 450 km. According to Saab Group, the GlobalEye is capable of detecting and tracking a combination of airborne and surface targets, the latter on both land and sea, while mission times of up to eleven hours in duration are possible.

In addition to the AEW radar, the GlobalEye is equipped with various additional sensors. These include the Seaspray 7500E maritime surveillance radar, provided by Italian defense conglomerate Leonardo; the Seaspray radar features synthetic-aperture radar and ground-oriented moving target indication modes. The GlobalEye also has an electro-optical/infrared sensor, which is situated underneath the forward fuselage. Other mission equipment includes data links, voice and satellite communications, and a command and control suite, the latter comprising five onboard operator stations.