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16 February 2017

Saab offers GaN-based AESA radar for India's Tejas LCA fighter aircraft

Sweden-based efence and security firm Saab AB is providing a sensor package for India's Tejas LCA Mk1A fighter aircraft, consisting of a Saab AESA fighter radar closely integrated with a compact electronic warfare suite using gallium nitride-based AESA technology.

In partnership with Indian industry, Saab is offering a solution that will bring the required airborne electronically scanned array (AESA) fighter radar and electronic warfare (EW) capability to India and the Indian Air Force.

The AESA fighter radar has been developed by Saab using antenna technology based on technologies using gallium nitride (GaN) and silicon carbide (SiC) substrates in combination with the latest generation of exciter/receiver and processor technology, giving optimum installed performance in a dense signal environment.

The radar has a complete mode suite that includes air-to-air, air-to-ground and air-to-sea capabilities. A built-in memory provides a tool to record a large amount of data from flights. Integration in the LCA Mk1A fighter aircraft is enabled by the limited space, power and cooling required.

The EW suite consists of sensors and transmitters developed by Saab and is a compact solution that provides essential situational awareness and self-protection. The heart of the suite is an electronic warfare receiver that is connected to a front-end receiver and fin tip antennas inside the aircraft. Also included is an external AESA jammer pod.

The radar warning system is based on ultra-wideband digital receivers and has high probability of intercept, good sensitivity and high selectivity for handling complex signal environments, it is claimed.

The AESA jammer pod is small in size, low on weight and drag. Self-protection is based on wideband digital RF memory (DRFM) that provides advanced jamming techniques and arbitrary combination of jamming waveforms. Transmission is performed using GaN-based AESAs. The EW suite also includes ground support systems and recording capability for advanced mission planning and post-flight analysis.

The AESA fighter radar and electronic warfare units have no ITAR (International Traffic in Arms Regulations)-restricted components, due to the high degree of Saab in-house developed and manufactured building blocks. Also, using contemporary technology provides adaptability and growth potential: technologies are re-used between variants and platforms in order to minimize life-cycle cost (LCC).

"In our partnership, the transfer of technology will secure an indigenous Indian capability for series production, maintenance, repair and overhaul capability," says Anders Carp, head of Saab business area Surveillance. "Testing and development of the fighter sensor package will have synergies with the systems developed for Gripen," he adds.

Tags: GaN MMIC Radar

Visit: www.saab.com

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