Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) today unveiled the ELM-2090S Spectra ‘mega radar,’ an ‘S band’ ‘companion’ to the Ultra UHF radar system introduced a few months ago at the Paris Air Show. The two radars are apparently part of a new, strategic, early-warning and defense system which has already become operational overseas. The dual-band, multi-radar, early- warning and missile-defense ‘system of systems,’ known as “Terra,” is designed to offer extended air- and missile-defense coverage against new and evolving ballistic missile threats that are becoming more capable, covering longer ranges at higher speeds, which require new capabilities for missile warning and defense.

Comprising a Dual-band Radar Array (DRA), Terra is optimized for early-warning, detection and accurate tracking of very long range targets such as ballistic missiles, satellites and air-breathing vehicles. Combining the long-range capabilities of the UHF radar and the high resolution offered by the S-band radars, Terra offers very long range and large volume search, accurate tracking and target classification for all object types – ballistic missiles, satellites and air breathing targets, including low Radar-Cross-Section (RCS) class (stealth) targets. In addition to target detection and tracking, Terra also provides accurate prediction of impact and launch point estimation.

“Ballistic and cruise missiles present a significant global threat to nations worldwide,” explained Mr. Nissim Hadas, IAI Executive VP & ELTA President. “The TERRA system provides outstanding performance for its users for very long range early warning, detection and highly accurate tracking. It is designed to confront the full range of modern threats, as the new SPECTRA radar is based on the most advanced modern technology and provides unique capabilities and excellent operational results, placing it among the best radars worldwide.”

According to Moshe Dehokerker, Business Development dept. manager at Elta Systems, this early start positions IAI 3-5 years ahead of international competitors producing strategic air- and missile-defense radars of this type. The Spectra radar is also the first ultra-large-scale radar relying on Elta’s Gallium-Nitride transmit-receive modules, which offer great advantages in power and size optimization. According to Dehokerker, this early start positions IAI 3-5 years ahead of international competitors producing strategic air- and missile-defense radars of this type. The Spectra radar is also the first ultra-large-scale radar relying on Elta’s Gallium-Nitride transmit-receive modules, which offer great advantages in power and size optimization.

An airborne view of the Terra test site, where integration testing of the IAI Elta TERRA dual-band multi-radar system is taking place. Photo: IAI
An airborne view of the Terra test site, where integration testing of the IAI Elta TERRA dual-band multi-radar system is taking place. Photo: IAI
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