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This reviews current UK airborne active electronically scanned array (AESA) designs, discusses current trends toward higher digitisation and multi-function aperture concepts, and details key future challenges that this technology faces. Specifically, we discuss applications to fast-jets. Key requirements are for higher levels of digitisation to provide the performance required in ECCM, STAP, GMTI, and ESM modes. Building radar systems with the key basic building blocks to, as a minimum, enable future realisation of these advanced modes will help to Â¿future proofÂ¿ the systems. This design philosophy is integral to the concept of through life capability management (TLCM); Le., a system designed to support the ability to sustain capability through incremental, spiral upgrades of signal processing, line replaceable items (LRIs), firmware, and advanced modes.
Date of Publication: Feb. 2010