Hensoldt South Africa launches new Bushbaby surveillance system


Hensoldt South Africa has launched its new Bushbaby long-range electro-optical sensor platform, designed for infrastructure and border protection, amongst others.

The Bushbaby was displayed during a capability demonstration in Pretoria in late November.

The Bushbaby is a land-based long-range imaging system for persistent surveillance, allowing the operator to identify and track intrusions, smugglers, terrorists, drones or any other conventional or asymmetric threat.

“Designed for military and security applications, Bushbaby offers a highly capable and affordable persistent surveillance capability,” Hensoldt South Africa said.

Main applications include critical infrastructure protection; airfield and sea ports protection; military and force protection; national key point monitoring; coastal and maritime surveillance; border security control; and aerial threat identification.

The system is able to operate 24 hours a day in night and poor weather conditions, and can be fixed or fitted to a vehicle.

The Bushbaby incorporates several sensors, namely a daylight HD sensor; a mid-wave infrared HD sensor; and a short-wave infrared sensor. This multi-spectrum sensor suite is capable of detecting threats up to ranges close to 30 km. An eye-safe laser rangefinder can measure distance up to 20 km. A human can be detected at a typical range of 16 km with the medium-wave infrared sensor recently developed and now produced by Hensoldt in South Africa.

The 61 kg Bushbaby is non-ITAR, like the majority of Hensoldt South Africa’s products. It complements the company’s other surveillance capabilities, including radar and electro-optical sensors. Hensoldt South Africa’s combined radar and electro-optical surveillance system is, for example, protecting nearly two thousand rhinos in the world’s largest rhino conservancy.

One of Hensoldt’s key portfolio areas is border security solutions, with Hensoldt South Africa having the vision to be the main turnkey solution provider for border authorities.