IHS Jane's

Thales SMART Defence

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3 allistic missile tracking requires much larger elevation, altitude and velocity coverage than required for AAW. SMART-L EWC will extend instrumented range out to 2,000 km, improve elevation coverage, introduce new waveforms and processing optimised for the detection and tracking of very high velocity ballistic missile targets at altitude, and enable estimation of trajectories, launch sites and points of impact. At the same time, all existing SMART-L volume air search functionality will be retained. e key challenge for ales Nederland has been to implement this early warning capability within the constraints (weight, volume and power) of a 5,000-tonne displacement frigate, while at the same time maximising re-use from the existing SMART-L radar. is has required a careful re-architecture that introduces a package of hardware, software and operating mode improvements without requiring major ship modifications. In comparison with the standard AAW waveform, the patented ELR waveform exhibits an increased duty cycle and different timing, including a semi-low pulse-repetition frequency and pulse coding. Clutter and surface mode pulses are removed and the radar transmits sets of pulses. is coded waveform allows radial velocity measurement at plot level (Doppler), range/Doppler unambiguous detection, and long range/high velocity coverage. Tuning to the radar antenna, SMART-L EWC introduces a full active electronically scanned array face that increases average output power while minimising the loss budget. Dual-axis multibeam operation provides for longer observation times. An active array architecture also improves redundancy, allowing for very graceful degradation in the event of individual module failures. Transmit/receive units, developed using experience from the previous APAR and SMILE/Sea Master 400 radars, are mounted immediately behind the front panel of the antenna structure. Two front-end conditioning cabinets will be fitted inside the array housing. Below-decks equipment is pared back to just a single video processing cabinet, a drive control cabinet and minor auxiliaries/peripherals. Despite the transition to an active array face, the weight and size of the SMART-L EWC antenna is close to that of SMART-L, and consequently there is only a very marginal impact on ship centre of gravity. Furthermore, the removal of legacy transmitter cabinets and waveguides from below decks means that overall system weight and volume are essentially reduced. Although much of SMART-L EWC is based on the insertion of new technology, ales Nederland has sought to capitalise on existing subsystems and proven functionality where possible. Reuse Innovative technology insertion from the existing SMART-L radar includes the basic antenna structure elements, the drive system, the climate control system and the AAW functionality. e rotating joint unit is brought across from the SMART-S Mk 2 medium range radar, while the new processing architecture is built on ales' generic SR3D platform. SMART-L has already earned an excellent r e p u t a t i o n for in-service reliability. To ensure this trend continues along an upward curve, ales has paid close attention to the maintenance and sustainability aspects of the SMART-L EWC radar; for example, it is looking to easy the maintenance burden by moving to a regime based on preventative maintenance. Furthermore, new built-in test equipment is intended to further ease maintenance. B

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