Radomes: Protection for Sensitive Radar Systems on Airplanes and Helicopters
Glass-fiber-reinforced radomes are protective plastic covers for radar antennae. They are used in airplanes and helicopters, bear aerodynamic loads, and protect sensitive antennae from external influences, including dirt, climatic influences, or bird strikes. At the same time, the radome must offer sufficient radar-electrical permeability so as to allow radar waves to be sent and received with lowest degradation. We are able to meet these exacting requirements thanks to our extensive expertise.
Jenoptik produces, repairs, and services radomes for many types of aircraft – including fixed-wing aircraft and helicopters. During the manufacturing process, we set the highest standards possible in terms of material, quality and precision. We apply a variety of modern techniques to produce radomes made from composite materials. As a result, our radomes, made from glass-fiber-reinforced plastics (GRP), are extremely lightweight yet very stable.
Our expert engineers in development and production have years of experience and use the latest manufacturing technologies in the production of composites. Jenoptik understands this extremely demanding production process better than almost any other company. The finished products are rigorously tested under real conditions with the original antennae. In this way we ensure that our radomes are of an extremely high quality that can be reproduced.
Jenoptik develops and produces radomes for the Eurofighter Typhoon, the multirole combat aircraft Tornado, and the NATO helicopter NH90. We are also the only company worldwide licensed by Boeing to service and repair the radomes of the AWACS reconnaissance aircraft by means of a special procedure.
- High quality: Years of experience and technological expertise (state-of-the-art).
- Durable: Exacting and highest demands on materials and processing stages.
- Tested: Quality control and intensive testing to ensure consistent quality.
- One-stop-shop: From development and production through to maintenance and repairs.
Fields of Application
- The civilian and military aviation industry: Radomes for aircrafts - airplanes as well as helicopters.
Eurofighter Typhoon Radome
Nose Radome Eurofighter Typhoon
Germany, Great Britain, Italy, and Spain developed the Eurofighter Typhoon in the 1980s and 1990s. To this day the aircraft is operated as a European multirole fighter aircraft, and is used for a range of operations, including protecting airspace.
Nose radome for the Eurofighter
Jenoptik heads a consortium consisting of companies from England, Italy, and Spain. Each of these companies produces a precisely pre-defined quantity of nose radomes for the Eurofighter. This radome, made from an extremely stable glass fiber composite, protects the multi-mode pulse-Doppler radar from external influences, such as precipation, dirt or bird strike, during flight. The radome covers the radar antennae and ensures lowest influence on the radar signals. Many years of experience in composite materials production and processing and established highly precise production processes guarantees that the Eurofighter radome is one of the best in its class.
Rotodome AWACS E-3
Service and Repair of AWACS Radomes
AWACS stands for Airborne Early Warning and Control System. This is an airborne radar system used by NATO and other international states for air surveillance and as operation control centers. From the 1970s to the 1990s, type E-3 AWACS systems were constructed on the basis of the Boeing 707, and since the end of the 1990s have been constructed on the basis of the Boeing 767.
One particular feature of AWACS airplanes is the rotodome with an impressive diameter of 9.1 meters that is mounted over the fuselage of the aircraft. This houses the radar system for detecting and following airborne targets.
Jenoptik: A Licensed Partner of Boeing for Maintenance of the AWACS Radomes
Jenoptik is the only Boeing partner outside the United States licensed for regular service, maintenance and repair of the AWACS radomes of the NATO AWACS squadron as well as the squadrons of other nations.
Weather Radar Radome NH90
The first NATO NH90 multirole helicopter was developed in the early 1990s. Airbus Helicopter, a joint venture of Agusta Westland, Stork Fokker, and Eurocopter, builds and sells the helicopter. Two versions of the NH90 are manufactured: one model is a TTH (Tactical Transport Helicopter) for air and land forces and the other model is a NFH (NATO Frigate Helicopter) for naval forces.
Weather Radar Radomes for TTH NH90 Models
Jenoptik develops and manufactures various nose radomes for all TTH models as well as the export version of the NATO NH90 helicopter. The radome protects the weather radar system from external influences during the flight. The high-quality cover made of glass-fiber-reinforced plastic (GRP) ensures the performance of the radar system is impaired as little as possible.