Leonardo showcases GEN III SAL seeker at DSEI 2021

The GEN III Semi-Active Laser (SAL) seeker provides high accuracy laser spot acquisition and tracking capability in a very compact sensor package for precision weapon terminal guidance. It is compatible with multiple guided weapon types including missiles, bombs and rockets

Army Recognition Official Show Daily News and Web TV UMEX 2020 925 001
The GEN III Semi-Active Laser (SAL) seeker is compatible with multiple guided weapon types including missiles, bombs and rockets (Picture source: Army Recognition)

With laser spot tracking and SAL seeking products currently in-service worldwide, this product has been developed due to the increasing demand for SAL guided weapons.

The complexity and dynamics of modern battlefield scenarios places challenging demands on guidance systems for precision attack weapons. The need for highly target selective and accurate terminal guidance across a broad range of scenarios cannot be achieved by GPS/INS systems alone.

The GEN III SAL seeker delivers unprecedented levels of seeker accuracy to maximise weapon cost effectiveness under demanding guidance system requirements.


▪ Compatible with NATO STANAG 3733 or raw pulse interval entry
▪ Linear angular reporting across field of view, enabling the benefits of proportional closed-loop weapon guidance throughout target engagement
▪ Single channel RS422 communication interface and simple to implement in host systems
▪ Comprehensive Built-in-Test (BIT) functionality
▪ Hermetically sealed rugged mechanical enclosure
▪ Provides mounting position on seeker body for auxiliary sensor.

The GEN III SAL seeker detects the pulsed laser signal within the field of view. The laser signal is processed to determine if the correct code is received e.g. NATO STANAG 3733 and its bearing relative to the seeker boresight is calculated. For non-NATO users, other country specific PRF codes can be utilised. The target bearing is reported to the host weapon via the RS422 communication link.

The GEN III SAL seeker product uses a unique configuration silicon detector providing continuous high resolution angular reporting over a wide field of view. Configuration of this technology is the subject of patents both granted and under application. It utilises mature signal processing read across from other laser sensor products currently in-service on a number of high performance platforms. The algorithms have a proven capability to acquire and maintain target track in the presence of false targets and clutter.

The GEN III SAL product provides a highly integrated complete sensor solution providing minimal risk of compatibility issues for ease of integration in customers’ systems. In order to facilitate integration with alternative weapon types, the seeker also accommodates a wide input voltage range. It has been qualified for weapon operations from fixed/rotary wing and UAS carriage platforms. Multi-kilometre seeker acquisition and sub-metric terminal accuracy have been repeatedly demonstrated.