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  1. #251
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck View Post
    Ultimately it comes down to what you want to achieve and of course budget. Thales offer a range of radars as do Raytheon and other well known western brands.

    For optimum coverage I would argue for one radar in the NW and the SW providing significant coverage of the western, northern and south western coasts. Lets be honest, the British ans French have the rest covered and the chances of someone straying into their FIR uninvited is slim. A system with a ceiling of about 70,000-80,000 feet should be sufficient and a range of 300-400km. Anything purchased should be fully be NATO standard, should we ever grow a pair and join.

    I'm not an expert in radar, I don't claim to be so if you can pick holes in my logic or make suggestions or criticisms then please feel free.
    Trust me, I'm no expert either but would go along with the above - it depends what the State wants to do.

    If it wants to start developing a fairly complete picture, long range search radars in the NW and SW, make perfect sense to me.

    And that's probably the simplest/cheapest part of the equation - any way I look at it, developing a more credible air defence system would be very expensive, at least in the context of typical Irish defense spending.

    I cant see the DF operating anything in the class of CAMM or NASAMs anytime in the next decade or even beyond.

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  3. #252
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    Quote Originally Posted by pym View Post
    Trust me, I'm no expert either but would go along with the above - it depends what the State wants to do.

    If it wants to start developing a fairly complete picture, long range search radars in the NW and SW, make perfect sense to me.

    And that's probably the simplest/cheapest part of the equation - any way I look at it, developing a more credible air defence system would be very expensive, at least in the context of typical Irish defense spending.

    I cant see the DF operating anything in the class of CAMM or NASAMs anytime in the next decade or even beyond.
    There are already 2 good IAA sites, one in the MW and one in the SW where a long range 3D active radar could be installed. Pricetag would be between €30m and €40m for the radars themselves and €15-20 for a proper control centre. But as we have discussed ay length already this would only give a high altitude picture which is great for tracking rouge airliners and the odd high level Russian bomber. Due to the shape of the country and the topography there is a need for a larger number of shorter range gap filler radar up to 8 could be needed.

    The radars can all be remote stations which would cut down on running costs but I do nt see anyone investing those sums in a sensor system.

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  5. #253
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    Quote Originally Posted by EUFighter View Post
    There are already 2 good IAA sites, one in the MW and one in the SW where a long range 3D active radar could be installed. Pricetag would be between €30m and €40m for the radars themselves and €15-20 for a proper control centre. But as we have discussed ay length already this would only give a high altitude picture which is great for tracking rouge airliners and the odd high level Russian bomber. Due to the shape of the country and the topography there is a need for a larger number of shorter range gap filler radar up to 8 could be needed.

    The radars can all be remote stations which would cut down on running costs but I do nt see anyone investing those sums in a sensor system.
    To begin with - given all of the many more challenges faced by the DF, any discussion about AD very quickly descends into the completely ****ing absurd.

    Long range air search radars generally have a slow scan rate and if you want to lock a target up, you are going to require medium/short range systems with faster scan rates to actually engage a target with a missile system. So if you want a full blown Air Defence network, the medium/short range systems follow on by default.

    Your comments about long range search radars only giving a "high altitude picture" is incorrect. I'm not going to say the below images are particularly accurate, but they give a decent idea of what primary radars located on three peaks on the west coast could potentially see, firstly at altitudes from 3,000ft to 5,000ft and then from 10,000ft to 30,000ft. It's obvious that something on the East coast would aid the picture, but - we're already in a mad hypothetical realm.




    The IAA haven't been able to justify the above infrastructure, so the chances of the DF being able to press DOD on getting even a single long range primary radar system is probably extremely remote.

    Perhaps something a bit(?) more realistic is the Giraffe BV206's being retired and replaced with a couple of truck mounted Giraffe AMB's.
    Last edited by pym; 16th December 2018 at 14:01.

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  7. #254
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    Quote Originally Posted by pym View Post
    To begin with - given all of the many more challenges faced by the DF, any discussion about AD very quickly descends into the completely ****ing absurd.

    Long range air search radars generally have a slow scan rate and if you want to lock a target up, you are going to require medium/short range systems with faster scan rates to actually engage a target with a missile system. So if you want a full blown Air Defence network, the medium/short range systems follow on by default.

    Your comments about long range search radars only giving a "high altitude picture" is incorrect. I'm not going to say the below images are particularly accurate, but they give a decent idea of what primary radars located on three peaks on the west coast could potentially see, firstly at altitudes from 3,000ft to 5,000ft and then from 10,000ft to 30,000ft. It's obvious that something on the East coast would aid the picture, but - we're already in a mad hypothetical realm.




    The IAA haven't been able to justify the above infrastructure, so the chances of the DF being able to press DOD on getting even a single long range primary radar system is probably extremely remote.

    Perhaps something a bit(?) more realistic is the Giraffe BV206's being retired and replaced with a couple of truck mounted Giraffe AMB's.
    What software are you using for that?

  8. #255
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    Quote Originally Posted by DeV View Post
    What software are you using for that?
    If you go to http://www.heywhatsthat.com/ there is an option for "Up in the Air" which gives you the option to calculate a Line of Sight from a given location at a particular altitude.

    So in the above I'm calculating the visual line of sight from Mount Gabriel, Mweelrea and Muckish - they're just random examples, I'm not saying they're the best locations by any means. God knows the backlash that would be unleashed if golf-balls sprouted on the latter two...

    The above is also the optical line of sight, which doesn't mesh 100% with the radar horizon, but I think it's good enough to provide a guideline.

    What the above should demonstrate quite clearly though is that even located on mountain tops, low level coverage is always severely limited by terrain - we can only imagine the low level (say <5kft) range limitations faced by the primary radars located at Cork, Dublin and Shannon airports.

    I think mobile short/medium range systems like the Giraffe AMB are the most realistic upgrade path for the DF - not saying it's likely though.

    It wouldn't be 24/7, it wouldn't be long range, but it would be mobile and a big advance compared to current systems.
    Last edited by pym; 16th December 2018 at 15:42.

  9. #256
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    Perhaps something a bit(?) more realistic is the Giraffe BV206's being retired and replaced with a couple of truck mounted Giraffe AMB's.
    No hope of the DF retiring something that is barely in service 10 years. However what is the possibility of SAAB getting to update the existing hardware? Better still is the 4A a more useful update? Why not go the whole hog and have something other than MANPAD based SAMs?
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  11. #257
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    Quote Originally Posted by na grohmití View Post
    No hope of the DF retiring something that is barely in service 10 years. However what is the possibility of SAAB getting to update the existing hardware? Better still is the 4A a more useful update? Why not go the whole hog and have something other than MANPAD based SAMs?
    How long were they in service with the Norwegians before that though - early 90's? The Flycatchers had a very short life in the DF.

    I can't say regarding potential upgrades. I don't know much about the radar on the BV's - other from Norwegian sources I think the range is about 55km and it's using a parabolic dish as opposed to the modern offerings from Saab which utilise PESA or AESA. I haven't had a gawk inside but I wouldn't be surprised to see green on black CRTs.

    The AMB offers a potential upgrade path to the likes of CAMM - *but* - the price jump from MANPADs to something like NASAMs or CAMM is so huge, I can't ever see it happening.

    The 4A is longer ranged, AESA based and more capable than the AMB, but presumably that comes at a hell of a cost.

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  13. #258
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    A very achievable option would be something like the SAAB MSHORAD.

    It uses vehicle mounted Giraffe 1X radar (75km range), coupled with vehicle mounted RBS70NG RWS. Like before targets are cued visually, however target tracking is automatic and that is a huge step up on the current system.

    https://saab.com/land/ground-based-a...stems/mshorad/

    Regarding radar coverage, the intelligent locating of two military radar sites would allow an acceptably high coverage if civilian radar was used to plug the gaps. It is important to note that civilian radar should never be viewed as a primary sensor as it lacks the anti-jamming capabilities of military radar.

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  15. #259
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    Quote Originally Posted by pym View Post
    To begin with - given all of the many more challenges faced by the DF, any discussion about AD very quickly descends into the completely ****ing absurd.

    Long range air search radars generally have a slow scan rate and if you want to lock a target up, you are going to require medium/short range systems with faster scan rates to actually engage a target with a missile system. So if you want a full blown Air Defence network, the medium/short range systems follow on by default.

    Your comments about long range search radars only giving a "high altitude picture" is incorrect. I'm not going to say the below images are particularly accurate, but they give a decent idea of what primary radars located on three peaks on the west coast could potentially see, firstly at altitudes from 3,000ft to 5,000ft and then from 10,000ft to 30,000ft. It's obvious that something on the East coast would aid the picture, but - we're already in a mad hypothetical realm.
    Let me come back with some clarification, for me low level is anything below FL010, up to FL100 is medium level and anything above that is high level. I too have used the same software and naturally the lower the target altitude the more our topography comes into play. A long range radar located at Dublin Airport will have great difficultly detected anything below FL020 to the south due to mountains.

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  17. #260
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    Quote Originally Posted by pym View Post
    How long were they in service with the Norwegians before that though - early 90's? The Flycatchers had a very short life in the DF.

    I can't say regarding potential upgrades. I don't know much about the radar on the BV's - other from Norwegian sources I think the range is about 55km and it's using a parabolic dish as opposed to the modern offerings from Saab which utilise PESA or AESA. I haven't had a gawk inside but I wouldn't be surprised to see green on black CRTs.

    The AMB offers a potential upgrade path to the likes of CAMM - *but* - the price jump from MANPADs to something like NASAMs or CAMM is so huge, I can't ever see it happening.

    The 4A is longer ranged, AESA based and more capable than the AMB, but presumably that comes at a hell of a cost.
    The flycatchers were a waste of money as were the el70.

    The giraffe isn't the most modern of systems, although it would be adequate for air defence of static targets like conferences and the like, which is what the pols care about. An interesting option would be acquiring Raytheon sentinel radars to replace the giraffe and using them with the rbs70; Latvia got four for about 20 million a few years ago. However I'd have thought that they'd run giraffe into the ground before buying anything new.

    Actually rbs70 bolide is effective from the real threat overseas which is drones and artillery strikes

    A mobile radar system like giraffe x would also add capabilities, a competitor would be the rps42 from Israel, given that drop shorts like to get its smarts from that part of the world
    Last edited by paul g; 16th December 2018 at 21:58.

  18. #261
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    To be fair while the flycatcher itself was better than nothing, the bell wire connecting it to the guns was something out of the great war and was a huge weakness.
    They were being given away and we took them all, as they were slightly better than the L60s they replaced, but of the same generation. The most pointless exercise of all was the fact they replaced the powered L60, which was highly modernised on the P20s with the same L70 as the ground version, but without the optics the L60s had. All 10 years before all the type were withdrawn from service.
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  20. #262
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    Quote Originally Posted by paul g View Post
    The flycatchers were a waste of money as were the el70.

    The giraffe isn't the most modern of systems, although it would be adequate for air defence of static targets like conferences and the like, which is what the pols care about. An interesting option would be acquiring Raytheon sentinel radars to replace the giraffe and using them with the rbs70; Latvia got four for about 20 million a few years ago. However I'd have thought that they'd run giraffe into the ground before buying anything new.

    Actually rbs70 bolide is effective from the real threat overseas which is drones and artillery strikes

    A mobile radar system like giraffe x would also add capabilities, a competitor would be the rps42 from Israel, given that drop shorts like to get its smarts from that part of the world
    Yep, you're right - it wouldn't matter if a longer range system was purchased - the RBS70, or something else in its class is still required and would be the most likely to go overseas.

    I know very little about the capabilities of Giraffe currently in service, I'd just be mindful of them probably being 20+ years old and would wonder about their serviceability levels - but I can't ever see them being replaced on a 1 for 1 basis either, the DF appeared to get a very good deal. Something like the 1X looks ideal for a future replacement.

    I think there's still something to be said for a longer ranged system, even in the context of static targets, but in my head I'm still thinking it would be truck mounted rather than static remote site(s):- given the difficulty the AC has with providing 24/7 ATC for one airfield, I'd question the ability of the DF to keep personnel in a 24/7/365 radar monitoring role.

    The recent civilian radar blackouts would be another argument for having a parallel, military controlled radar network, but it's way down the list.
    Last edited by pym; 16th December 2018 at 22:35.

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  22. #263
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    If we are looking at an improvement in a strategic level upgrade in terms of air surveillance radar one of the most important things is that it fits into existing IAA infrastructure.

    That means it needs to feed into Ballycasey where it will be monitored. It also needs to feed into the IAA’s & Eurocontrol’s ARTAS system.

    Primarily that is what it is for, ATC therefore it should be owned, operated and maintained by the IAA. That is not to say that it can’t be a military spec radar as ECM, low observatory aircraft and drones are also hazards to navigation.

    All than needs to feed into the AC systems.

  23. #264
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    In absolutely no way should military radar feed into the IAA operated system. For multiple reasons. Such technology is a national security concern to multiple nations. The information it generates is potentially senaitive. It must remain under military control at all times. I doubt you would even be granted permission to purchase under such conditions.

    By all means have a phone link where a civilian ATCO can contact his military counterpart and ask if they are seeing something but retain control of information and technology at all times.

  24. #265
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jetjock View Post
    In absolutely no way should military radar feed into the IAA operated system. For multiple reasons. Such technology is a national security concern to multiple nations. The information it generates is potentially senaitive. It must remain under military control at all times. I doubt you would even be granted permission to purchase under such conditions.

    By all means have a phone link where a civilian ATCO can contact his military counterpart and ask if they are seeing something but retain control of information and technology at all times.
    NATS in the U.K. have a joint ops room with the RAF

    As I said a long range primary radar will mainly be used for ATC

    A civvy spec radar would also be much cheaper and wouldn’t come out of the DF budget ... but AC would still have access

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  26. #266
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    Quote Originally Posted by DeV View Post
    NATS in the U.K. have a joint ops room with the RAF

    As I said a long range primary radar will mainly be used for ATC

    A civvy spec radar would also be much cheaper and wouldn’t come out of the DF budget ... but AC would still have access
    The purpose of the joint Nats/Military Ops room is to manage interaction between the UK's 800 plus active military aircraft and one of the busiest FIRs on the planet. It does not provide joint access to the air defence picture. That is managed from RAF Boulmer.
    On a smaller scale there has been a military controller station at Dublin ATC centre for many years for similar reasons.

    Long range primary radar has little usefulness to civilian ATC in 2018. It serves as a back up. The IAA is sufficiently funded to increase their capabilities if it deems it necessary. They would consider themselves over specced in all areas, including the necessary primary radar coverage for effective ATC.

    A civvy spec radar would be cheaper true, but it has no built in robustness to even the most basic of jamming. Something easily within the capability of the next Bear to fly down the West coast.

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  28. #267
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jetjock View Post
    Long range primary radar has little usefulness to civilian ATC in 2018. It serves as a back up. The IAA is sufficiently funded to increase their capabilities if it deems it necessary. They would consider themselves over specced in all areas, including the necessary primary radar coverage for effective ATC.
    Which is fine until ...

    the next Bear to fly down the West coast.

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  30. #268
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    Quote Originally Posted by DeV View Post
    Which is fine until ...
    here's the thing - civilian ATC don't consider (with good reason) military aircraft buggering about to be within their purvue - when that happens its a military airspace control problem, not a civilian ATC problem.

    and no, you'd be very unlikely to get an responses to a request for bids that started off with 'we're looking for three remote radar heads linked to a central air space control facility - the radars should ba capable of detecting a Gulfstream 4 sized aircraft with its transponder switched off at 300 miles at 30,000ft and 200 miles at 5,000ft, and be resistant to jamming. oh yes, and it'll be manned by civvies who will work for an organisation completely outside the DoD's control...'

    capital costs for 3 RRH's, the feed, and the control centre would be unlikely to top €100m. the manning costs would be unfortunate, but managable.

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