EADS Defence Electronics sees applications for active electronically scanned array radars with fighter aircraft as well as maritime and ground-based systems.

A leading application for the company's transmit/receive (T/R) modules comes through their use as part of the ongoing Stand-off Surveillance and Target Acquisition Radar-X technology demonstration project. To feed into the transatlantic collaborative radar sensor suite for use by NATO's Alliance Ground Surveillance (AGS) battlefield reconnaissance system, the work is on track, with all milestones met, says EADS. The company is part of the Transatlantic Industrial Proposed Solution team expected to deliver the manned element of the AGS system using modified Airbus A321s.

Used in a smaller array, the modules also hold promise for use in future fire-control radars, an area being pursued through the Amsar active-array demonstrator programme now under way with several other European avionics houses, including BAE Systems.

Up to 10,000 T/R modules could be used per multifunction firecontrol radar as part of the future German / Italian / US Medium Extended Air Defence System (MEADS). EADS Defence Electronics hopes to receive an initial order under the forthcoming $2.8-3 billion engineering and manufacturing development phase of the MEADS project.

The T/R modules will also be used by Germany's future KMW Dingo 2 vehicle-mounted Tactical Radar Ground Surveillance (TRGS) system. To use an active phased array for artillery location and gap-filler radar applications, this will have a maximum detection range of 40km (21nm).

In addition to leading the development of the T/R module from Ulm, EADS Defence Electronics plans to manufacture millions of the devices at its microwave factory on the site. Although they are 10% more expensive to produce than mechanically scanned antennas active array systems offer increased reliability and capability, says EADS. As costs are reduced further, the devices could be grouped in smaller numbers, for example for use as missile seekers, it says.

Source: Flight International