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AESA Radar Expanding Defense Platform Capabilities

A wide range of active electronically scanned array (AESA) technology military applications are coming into service for next-generation defense platforms, which will generate both engineering demand and new revenue streams for the global defense industry. The Strategy Analytics Advanced Defense Systems (ADS) service will be providing an overview on AESA radar technology in a presentation called, “AESA Radar - Fundamentals and Application” at “Avionics Europe Incorporating Defense Electronics,” March 24-25, 2010, in Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

In AESA technology, an electronically scanned array takes a signal from a single source, splits it into multiple paths, selectively delays some of them, and sends them to individual antennas. AESA radar uses solid-state transmit-receive (T/R) modules and phase shifters to power each element, which offers various capabilities, including electronic beam steering, adaptable frequency operation and multiple beam combinations.

According to Asif Anwar of Strategy Analytics, “AESA technology permits greater flexibility for defense platforms by allowing a single unit to perform multiple functions, including long and short range scanning, electronic warfare and communications.

Examples of operational AESA radar include:

• the AN/APG-77 for the F-22;

• the AN/APG-81 for the F-35; and

• the APAR (Active Phased Array Radar) multifunctional AESA radar for naval warships.”

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