Photo: HMAS Perth
Electronics have generally gotten smaller and computing power cheaper. It looks like Aegis like capabilities may finally be following that trend.
Defense Industry Daily reports on collaboration between the US and the Australia on a new phased array radar system that have already been successfully tested on a 3,600 ton Australian frigate and may find its way onto USN littoral combat ships that are now equipped very much like the Bertholf Class Cutters and the projected Offshore Patrol Cutters. Other phased array systems have been deployed on Singapore’s 3,200 ton Formidable Class frigates and the Netherlands’ 3,750 ton Holland class Offshore Patrol Vessels.
Not that Iranian news releases have a high degree of credibility, but even they are claiming to have developed something similar, “Iran has tested its newest long-range phased array radar system, named the Asr (Era)…Rear Admiral Ali Gholamzadeh told reporters that the radar system had been designed and manufactured by Iranian experts…The radar system will be installed on a number of the Navy’s warships…”
If the weight and price comes down, there are lots of reasons to go to phased array systems. They eliminate moving parts. They include large numbers of identical parts and can normally continue to operate even if some of them fail, resulting in loss of only part of the radar’s capability rather than complete failure. They may also simultaneously serve multiple functions including surface and air search, track, and firecontrol.