PAF Early Warning System Saab 2000December 10, 2009
ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Air Force on Tuesday received first of its four Saab-2000 Airborne Early Warning and Control aircraft from Sweden. According to an official announcement, the aircraft landed at one of main operating bases, marking a major milestone in PAF’s overall modernisation plan.
With the induction of the Swedish system, PAF has become one of the few air forces in the world to have Airborne Early Warning capability. Besides detecting high- and medium-altitude aircraft, this state-of-the-art system is also capable of detecting low-level flying objects over land and sea at extended ranges. The system is capable of picking even the surface targets over the sea. By virtue of these features, PAF would be able to boost its operational capability manifold by achieving requisite early warning for efficient and meaningful air defence of its airspace.
The Erieye AEW&C mission system radar is an active, phased-array, pulse-Doppler sensor that can feed an onboard operator architecture or downlink data (via an associated datalink subsystem) to a ground-based air defence network. The system employs a large aperture, dual-sided antenna array housed in a dorsal ‘plank’ fairing. The antenna is fixed, and the beam is electronically scanned, which provides for improved detection and significantly enhanced tracking performance compared with radar-dome antenna systems.Erieye detects and tracks air and sea targets out to the horizon (and beyond due to anomalous propagation)—instrumented range has been measured at 450 km.
Typical detection range against fighter-sized targets is approximately 350 km, in a 150° broadside sector, both sides of the aircraft. Outside these sectors, performance is reduced in forward and aft directions.Other system features include:Adaptive waveform generation (including digital, phase-coded pulse compression), signal processing and target trackingTrack While Scan (TWS)Low sidelobe values (throughout the system’s angular coverage)Low- and medium-pulse repetition frequency operating modesFrequency agilityAir-to-air and sea surveillance modesTarget radar cross-section displayThe radar operates as a medium- to high-PRF pulse-Doppler, solid-state radar, in E/F-band (3 GHz), incorporating 192 two-way transmit/receive modules that combine to produce a pencil beam, steered as required within the operating 150° sector each side of the aircraft (one side at a time). It is understood that Erieye has some ability to detect aircraft in the 30° sectors fore and aft of the aircraft heading, but has no track capability in this sector