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Aselsan Unveils its T/EIRS and STR Systems

Aselsan introduced the production models of the Portable Early Warning Radar System (TEIRS) developed for the Air Forces Command (HvKK) and Long-Range Weapon Locating Radar developed for the Land Forces Command (KKK) for the first time during the New System Introduction and Facility Opening Ceremony organized with the participation of President Recep Tayyip ERDOĞAN on November 12, 2020. The company previously displayed the mockups of TEIRS and STR solutions during the IDEF ‘17 Fair.

Issue 103

The S-Band Portable Early Warning Radar System/TEIRS is developed within the scope of the Early Warning Radar Systems / EIRS (Portable and Fixed) Project, the contract of which was signed between the Presidency of Defense Industries and Aselsan on June 20, 2016, to improve long range early warning capabilities of the HvKK, including current threats with a small radar cross section. 4 units were ordered in the first phase and additional units are expected to reach 22 in fixed and portable configuration in total. TEIRS will have Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) type antenna technology (electronic scanning and digital beam forming architecture) with a target detection range of 470 km.

TEIRS will be able to detect and track targets with very small radar cross sections, including Ballistic Missiles. Digital Beam Forming (DBF) capability increases system performance in features such as detection, tracking, direction finding, classification, and also in various functions such as volume search, surface search, precision tracking, target recognition, routing and electronic protection can simultaneously be performed. The delivery of the first radar was planned to be made in 2020.

With the long-range T/EIRS, Aselsan has launched activities on a particular type of radar. The EIRS Project is considered to be one that will pave the way for Aselsan in the field of long-range radars. AESA sensor technology utilizes Gallium Nitride (GaN) semiconductor technology and it is capable of creating multiple digital beams using solid-state Transmit / Receive (T/R) modules.  As the output power and algorithms will be under the control of Aselsan, the limitations in terms of range will also be eliminated. EIRS has been planned as a project that is able to meet all of Turkey’s long-range radar needs. EIRS will also be used as a search radar in the SIPER Long Range Area Air and Missile Defense System, the activities for which were initiated in 2016.

The contract for the Long-Range Weapon Locating Radar/STR project was signed between Ministry of National Defense and Aselsan on December 16, 2016 to meet the requirement for a new generation longer range STR to replace and support the two C-Band Cobra Counter Battery Radars in the inventory. Developed under a contract worth US$ 176,850 million, the hardware building blocks of the EIRS Project are used in the STR. Within the scope of the contract, not only will the STR will be developed, but also a certain number of radars (9) will be produced and delivered to the KKK. Aselsan Long-Range Weapon Locating Radar, which has similar features with the Cobra Counter-Battery Radar and IAI/Elta product S-Band EL/M-2084 MMR under the service of KKK, has different algorithms and antenna architecture compared to EIRS/TEIRS. Aselsan had previously delivered 15 SERHAT Counter Mortar Radars (HTR project) to KvKK under a contract worth TRY 30.48 million (nearly US$ 16 million) signed with the Ministry of National Defense.

With the AESA type antenna technology, the S-Band Aselsan STR will be able to precisely calculate the coordinates of the points of origin after detecting mortars, cannons, and rocket ammunition fired by enemy elements in the air. Since the system can also calculate the possible points of impact of the mortars, cannons and rocket ammunition fired by the enemy, friendly elements in the related region can be informed to prevent loss of life and property before such ammunition descends and makes contact. Aselsan STR transmits the coordinates of the enemy mortar, cannon and rocket systems that shoot STR to friendly fire support units via radio and will ensure their destruction. In this context, the system can also be used to adjust and co-ordinate artillery fire by friendly troops.

Aselsan STR will have solid state power amplifier, digital beam forming and high-performance signal and data processing infrastructure and it will be able to operate 24-hours uninterruptedly and can be transported with the A400M Atlas Transport Aircraft. The aim is that the STR will be able to detect the target within the range of 100 km. In this context, based on the caliber of the mortars, they can be detected from a distance of 25 km to 50 km and a Katyusha-type artillery rocket can be detected from a distance of 100 km. A 10-ton class 6x6 configuration tactical wheeled vehicle was used as a carrier platform in the STR. However, STR is designed to operate platform independent. When necessary, it will be removed from the vehicle and the radar will be able to operate on its own. Unlike Cobra STR, Aselsan STR will consist of two separate carrier platforms. In order to prevent the vulnerability in the Cobra STR, the platform of Aselsan STR has been elevated so that the antenna can rotate 360 degrees and orient to the desired area (blind spot is prevented) and the shelter used as the command-and- control center has been placed on a separate platform. The AESA type STR antenna will be fixed and will be able to electronically scan a 100-degree sector instantly. It is stated that 360-degree coverage can also be achieved on account of special algorithms. The total weight of the antenna subsystem is aimed to be around 4 tons and the total weight of the system to be less than 10 tons. Aselsan STR will have two operators and will have in-device testing capability, with two separate diesel generators, one of which is stand-by, and will be able to operate 24 hours uninterruptedly. The system will be able to take electric power directly from the network without the need for a generator in environments where the electric power network is available.

According to the information we have obtained, only one of the two second-hand Cobra Counter-Battery Radars transferred from the German Land Forces is operational (there were 12 Cobra STRs in the inventory) and the other is inactive due to technical failures (used as a mobile spare part depot). The C-Band Cobra Counter Battery Radar, which is stated to have some vulnerabilities due to the carrier platform in 1970 model 8x8 configuration, successfully served in operations carried out in Syria recently. There is a command center placed in a shelter at the back of the radar. Since the radar antenna is blocked because the related shelter is higher than the radar platform at the point the radar faces the driver's seat, a 90-degree blind spot exists, therefore the radar coverage is limited to a maximum of 270 degrees. The Cobra Counter-Battery Radar’s antenna, consisting of 2,700 Transfer/Receive (T/R) modules and approximately 20,000 Gallium Arsenide (GaAs) integrated circuits (it stated that the radar cost constitutes 70% of the system cost), performs instant electronic scanning in a 90-degree sector in a fixed position. It is mentioned in the product brochure that the Cobra Counter-Battery Radar, having a maximum range of 100 km, can detect the location of 240 separate weapon systems or 40 artillery batteries in nearly 2 minutes at ranges over 40 km.