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Worlds largest phased array radar under construction

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posted on Sep, 29 2015 @ 08:33 PM
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originally posted by: Zaphod58
a reply to: Halfswede

Right, but once it was redesigned, it would have served the role he was asking about. I always thought that putting a radar like that at sea just made sense.
there are now going to be or are two of those SBX things. one near alaska and one wherever Japan puts it.




posted on Sep, 29 2015 @ 09:05 PM
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a reply to: stormbringer1701

Now if they can only get them to actually see their targets.



posted on Sep, 29 2015 @ 09:31 PM
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originally posted by: Zaphod58
a reply to: stormbringer1701

Now if they can only get them to actually see their targets.
generally when a modern radar needs to see something it is a matter of changing the software. the raw video is analysed for object with RCS, speed and perhaps trajectory parameters. if the software is satisfied that a return may be a valid target it sends a verification beam set if the returns from that again satisfy the expected parameters it begins a tracking function where sets of beams are placed where the radar expects one of the beams will be broken / reflected by the object as it progresses. this is repeated. for things like mortars artillery or ballistic trajectory rockets tracking only needs to continue long enough to extrapolate a parabolic line equation to an impact point or interpolate to the objects origin.

for more complex targets such as those that maneuver in flight or can change course you have to continuously track and send out tracking beams often enough to not lose the object between projecting tracking bracket beams.

But really virtually all of that is completely configurable by means of software and the parts that are not software dependent; such as array elements in the antenna and the phase shift driver hardware or the exciter saw ovens or the TX amplifiers are generally already sufficiently advanced as to not be a problem.

E;G; my old radar had just one big twt. the replacement radar has a twt for every antenna aperture (thats hundreds of TWTs in a single freaking radar which was unimaginable in my time.) there is no way in hades it cannot produce enough beams to take care of a slippery target. no way in hades it has to rely on a target fitting a static ballistic formula or velocity. no way in heck the modern signal processor cant process enough raw video quickly enough to follow even a hyper sonic missile. and the bigger the radar array the less likely it is that it cannot handle all of the requisite tasks even better.

my old radar had to discriminate what to follow and what not to follow in order to conserve its resources both in the fences and in the signal processor. these new purpose built radars? i imagine they have millions of cycles to spare everywhere in the system.
edit on 29-9-2015 by stormbringer1701 because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 29 2015 @ 09:49 PM
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a reply to: stormbringer1701

The SBX has proven next to useless, which throws a huge wrench into the GBI system, as it's one of the keys to its operations.

It spends most of its time in storage in Pearl Harbor because the platform can't handle the Being Sea much of the year. The platform requires upgrades to the structure. The radar is so myopic it frequently can't even see the incoming missile. When it does, it has trouble telling decoys from warheads. And then when all that does work, it sometimes has problems talking to the kill vehicle.



posted on Sep, 29 2015 @ 10:00 PM
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After attack radar in the air force...I was off to ratheon for seeker software.....I never could see inherent reliability....
the lingo was x-axis this.....y axis that......not from a single station set....this news is no pussy cat



posted on Sep, 29 2015 @ 10:57 PM
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originally posted by: Zaphod58
a reply to: stormbringer1701

The SBX has proven next to useless, which throws a huge wrench into the GBI system, as it's one of the keys to its operations.

It spends most of its time in storage in Pearl Harbor because the platform can't handle the Being Sea much of the year. The platform requires upgrades to the structure. The radar is so myopic it frequently can't even see the incoming missile. When it does, it has trouble telling decoys from warheads. And then when all that does work, it sometimes has problems talking to the kill vehicle.
The platform thing is disturbing. but is the radars "myopia" due to signal processing trouble, detection verification and tracking algorythm issues or hardware? generally the only thing not fixable easily with reference to a radar is the frequency and type of breakdown of system components, the amount of time it is down for maintenance or non mission capable. software issues can be solved in short order just getting the contracting vendor to push software fixes and version upgrades.
edit on 29-9-2015 by stormbringer1701 because: (no reason given)

edit on 29-9-2015 by stormbringer1701 because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 29 2015 @ 11:19 PM
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a reply to: stormbringer1701

It's got issues with both. The radar field of view is only 25 degrees. It's ridiculously powerful, but it requires other radars to find targets and the operators to adjust it to look in the right area.

It's had multiple software upgrades for various failures during tests and has yet to be the primary radar in a successful test.



posted on Sep, 30 2015 @ 12:53 AM
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The array can't swing a beam more than 12 degrees off center. So you have to mechanically reposition it with a really slow gimbal system.

Worse, it's designed to look for very small objects at very large distances, so they are running in X band. That's nice, but
the upshot is that you have to wait a comparatively long time for all the echoes to come back before making a small aiming change and firing again. And you get back a # heap of data you have to correlate, and altogether the long time between pulses combined with the data load and the small aperture means that it was pretty much doomed for missile tracking from the start.

Also the way they're doing the receiver section was stupid, you need to pop out a matrix of tagged pulses and sort out the returns with a wider lobe by tag, so you can get returns from a block of sky rather than poking the sky with a needle. The tx and rx arrays should have been different, and separated. A two array monostatic setup instead of what they did.

It would have made the signal processing exciting, but you'd have had a chance.



posted on Sep, 30 2015 @ 08:07 AM
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originally posted by: Zaphod58
a reply to: stormbringer1701

It's got issues with both. The radar field of view is only 25 degrees. It's ridiculously powerful, but it requires other radars to find targets and the operators to adjust it to look in the right area.

It's had multiple software upgrades for various failures during tests and has yet to be the primary radar in a successful test.
then it is poorly designed. a boondoggle. it should never have been accepted as designed. this is the worst sort of procurement debacle.
With todays tech a radar with that mission could be designed so that it would start service not only obsolete but have an operational relevance for 3 to five decades before becoming a legacy system. i mean multi twt, 180 degree sector edges, range of electronic line of sight, enough processing power to track all possible airborne clutter returns individually, no hope in hell of decoys or chaff causing it to drop tracks, in fact it should be able to track every grain in a sand storm and not lose real targets.

to get anything less especially for a low density, high priced system is criminal.

you don't get lower lower density then just one system, two if you count the Japanese one. You don't get more critical than having the mission of preventing cities full of people from being evaporated.



posted on Sep, 30 2015 @ 10:12 AM
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i am furious.

let me show you something:

en.wikipedia.org...

This radar was designed in the late 1960s and built during the late 70s/early 80s with 1960s radar state of the art principles.
I was a MOS Series 13R for 20 years. I know that system in and out from operator to depot level technical stuff.

That article does not even begin to list the full capabilities of that radar or its slightly more advanced more mobile sibling the Q36 radar.

we could stare at 180 degrees of sky with out moving the antenna and the antenna was moved with an electrical motor. in fact it had an extended azimuth mode that allowed you to move the center of sector any where except a narrow sector to the exact rear due to a mechanical limit.

it had multiple frequency modes, Several ecm and eccm functions, memory for 99 targets in permanent memory (until the computer and sig processor were upgraded to a (gasp! hardened pentium 4)

we definitely could track stuff we were not supposed to be able to track if the circumstances were right.

A helo coming up over a hill would sometimes give us a false target and the location data would be off but we could work out what really happened. good thing too. this literally prevented The US and ROK from lighting up North Korea once during a presidential visit. everyone was locked and loaded with orders to open fire (with every thing) should we (my radar crew) detect a round coming from NK territory. we detected that "round." i manually rechecked the origin and impact vs terrain and guessed that this was a false target. TOC called and asked for verification of the round that had been sent automatically. I asked if a Helo had come up over a mountain in the vicinity of the post. I told them i was pretty sure it was a helo and not a NK round. So the decision was made not to ruin NK's day and thus our own.

we also could detect bursts of ak fire or large caliber crew served weapons or tank rounds under the right circumstances. None of this is supposed to happen. The radar is supposed to drop targets that don't have the rcs, velocity and conform to proper ballistic trajectories for at least 150 meters. In Bosnia we were getting a lot of AK fire or other small arms fire. usually we saw the initial detect , some tracking and the round drops out of the computer. but occasionally we'd get a full solution. We even suppressed and helped find that former Olympic marksman turned sniper that was haunting sarajevo. we'd give the vicinity when we saw tracking or if we got a solution and HQ sent out helos to look. the mere fact that helos went near where this guy was stopped him from shooting and eventually they got him.

occasionally the contractors would come and gather data to help increase target discrimination or to improve things like our range or track stuff outside the parameters as originally programmed. like for rockets.

our range was increased from the range in the stat sheet to greatly extended range which may remain classified. probably not. but i don't know for sure so i'm not telling.

at the cost of increased false targets we got to track bigger stronger faster missiles.

thats almost all software changes.

there is a depot level program in the hard drive (used to be a magnetic tape) that allows the radar to track the sun.
edit on 30-9-2015 by stormbringer1701 because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 2 2015 @ 03:12 PM
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originally posted by: Zaphod58
a reply to: stormbringer1701

The SBX has proven next to useless, which throws a huge wrench into the GBI system, as it's one of the keys to its operations.

It spends most of its time in storage in Pearl Harbor because the platform can't handle the Being Sea much of the year. The platform requires upgrades to the structure. The radar is so myopic it frequently can't even see the incoming missile. When it does, it has trouble telling decoys from warheads. And then when all that does work, it sometimes has problems talking to the kill vehicle.



It performed flawlessly as the primary radar in the last two GMD tests - FTG07 and FTG-06b and hasn't had anything close to a failure since upgrades years ago. That is public record. I will grant you that it is ridiculously expensive, but its capabilities are unmatched.

It is not possible to be a search radar and still have the resolution to discriminate like it can -- without being much more expensive (dual band)
It is like putting a mag-light in pencil mode and telling someone to find the bug on the wall in a dark room. Pencil mode can show you the details of the bug, but you aren't going to see where it is without a wider initial view.

It is not meant to be a search radar, that is why there are specialized search radars.

Also, it doesn't talk to the kill vehicle ...ever. Again, not its job.
edit on 2-10-2015 by Halfswede because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 2 2015 @ 03:27 PM
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a reply to: Halfswede

After the money they've sunk into it it should work at least some of the time. In at least one recent test the DOT&E office noted that while it worked well, it was used in a non-realistic way, to ensure they reached their goals for the test.



posted on Oct, 2 2015 @ 03:40 PM
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originally posted by: Bedlam
The array can't swing a beam more than 12 degrees off center. So you have to mechanically reposition it with a really slow gimbal system.
...


Again, you can't get details for discrimination from a big fat search beam. And grating lobes prevent e-slew way off center in any radar especially one with a pencil-beam. It has no problem tracking a missile to within a ridiculously small error. The mechanical slew is more than fast enough to track anything out there at the same time it is able to electronically steer. Barring raids coming from opposite sides of the ocean, it can handle it.

While it did have a few hiccups several years ago and is expensive as heck, it has proven itself multiple times since. What you see in the wiki is kindergarten stuff. Still, though it is way expensive.



posted on Oct, 2 2015 @ 03:48 PM
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originally posted by: Zaphod58
a reply to: Halfswede

After the money they've sunk into it it should work at least some of the time. In at least one recent test the DOT&E office noted that while it worked well, it was used in a non-realistic way, to ensure they reached their goals for the test.


I think the problem lies in the fact that the media thinks of the components of GMD as one and the same. The tests are generally contrived or limited in scope. That is no fault of SBX. All I can say... is SBX has no problem with anything that could currently be thrown at it.

The GMD/BMDS is another story.
edit on 2-10-2015 by Halfswede because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 5 2015 @ 04:08 AM
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originally posted by: Zaphod58
a reply to: TheBorg

Eventually, once they can free up the budget for it. They'll have three or four facilities from what I've heard.


Upgrading or replacing BMEWS sites?



posted on Oct, 5 2015 @ 09:16 AM
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a reply to: stratsys-sws

Neither. Strictly for orbital debris and satellite tracking.



posted on Oct, 7 2015 @ 06:01 AM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

OK, I just thought that as the mission overlaps (I know Fylingdales currently tracks all orbital objects over a certain size) they may combine or upgrade those radars.

Cheers
Robbie




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