PARIS AIR SHOW NEWS: Raytheon’s New GhostEye Radar Targeted for International Customers

By Stew Magnuson

Raytheon photo

PARIS — Raytheon Technologies used the Paris Air Show as an opportunity to showcase its new air and missile defense radar that is intended for international militaries.

The GhostEye radar grew out of the Lower-Tier Air and Missile Defense Sensor developed for the U.S. Army, also known as the Patriot missile defense system replacement, said Joseph DeAntona, executive director of business development — defense capabilities and solutions at Raytheon.

“As we were developing it, one of the things we wanted to keep in mind was the ability to modularize this technology so we could apply it to a host of different situations,” he said in an interview at the company’s pavilion at the air show.

The GhostEye employs the lower-tier system’s gallium nitride active electronically scanned array radar, which is easy to use and maintain and has better performance than traditional radars, he said.

The lower-tier system has one large stationary array in front and two smaller arrays in back to give it a wide view. Raytheon took the gallium nitride radar from one of the back arrays — which has already been tested and certified — and put it on a rotating platform to give it a 360-degree view, he said.

It is used in tandem with the National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile System, or NASAMS, produced in partnership with Norway’s Kongsberg Defense and Aerospace.

“The GhostEye is going to be our pathway to take our current NASAMS customers well into the 21st century,” he added.

The war in Ukraine has brought the need for more robust air and missile defense systems in Europe to the fore, but DeAntona said the new radar had been in the works for almost a decade.

“We started well over 10 years ago anticipating that these threats were on their way … we used the last decade to our advantage to develop this,” he said. “You just don’t develop something like this in a year or 18 months.”

The company has a built-in market for the new radar as 13 nations in Europe, the Middle East and the Indo-Pacific use NASAMS already, he noted.

The most high-profile NASAMS customer is Ukraine, which now has two of the systems it is using in its fight against Russia.

The radar unit is self-contained with an onboard generator, it can be backed out of a C-130 airlifter by two people in 30 minutes and used in austere environments, said Eric Maule, associate director of requirements and capabilities at Raytheon. The complete system is 100 percent NATO complaint, he added.

“You may see many other radars with off-board generators, off-board cooling and additional pieces that go with it. What we have right here is a radar that folds down, has an onboard generator, onboard cooling — all the electronics are on board,” Maule said.

While the GhostEye was designed for the international NASAMS market, there is interest in the United States from entities other than the Army, DeAntona said. “There are other U.S. government, DoD agencies that are very interested in the GhostEye,” he said, declining to name them.


Topics: International

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