Thales signs historic contract to secure Bolivian Airspace

At a ceremony held today at the Elysee Palace in Paris, in the presence of Bolivian President Evo Morales and French President Francois Hollande, Thales signed a historic contract with the Bolivian Ministry of Defence, for integrated air defence and civil air traffic management (ATM), in Bolivia.

Under this historic contract, launched by the Bolivian government, Thales will deploy its civil and air defence radars and automation systems to modernise and integrate Bolivia’s air defence and civil ATM operations.

The contract amount is estimated at €185m. Thales will supply a total of thirteen radars across twelve sites, including four air defence radars, one Star2000 primary surveillance radar, two TRAC approach radars and six RSM970 secondary radars. The radars will form the backbone of the surveillance infrastructure and will be integrated into a new purpose built air traffic control centre complex.

The centre will house the TopSky-ATC, the most advanced ATM system in the world, to deliver advanced air traffic management operations, and the state-of-the-art SkyView air C4I system, to deliver a single integrated air picture and common situation awareness for defence air operations. The 2,500 square meter complex will be built over the coming months and is due for completion in 2017 when the new system will become operational.

The building will also house a Center of Excellence, designed to ensure significant transfer of competencies of both operational and technical knowhow.

Thales will also integrate and manage all communications systems necessary for the operations as well as the communication backbone to twelve radar sites distributed all over the country.

Thales is the leading ATM provider in the world with a track-record in large scale civil/military ATM systems. This represents the third such contract, Thales has been involved in across 2014 and 2015. It joins the £1.5bn Marshall Programme to modernise operations across UK military airfields and the OneSky Programme where Thales has been selected as a contractor to integrate military/civil operations in Australia.