Turkey and South Korea have shown interest in buying the Flying Aircraft Radar signature Acquisition and Determination (FARAD), an electromagnetic measurement radar system produced by IDS Ingegneria Dei Sistemi SpA, the company told Jane's .
FARAD is designed to perform dynamic Radar Cross Section (RCS) measurements of flying targets, with sensitivity suitable for measuring stealth platforms. The Italian Air Force Test Center is using this system through a service co-operation with IDS to assess the RCS of some of its aircraft.
The system is designed to perform dynamic RCS measurements of high-speed low observable flying targets from aircraft and helicopters to small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). It features an embedded target tracking capability optimised for flying targets' short-range RCS dynamic measurement that helps the radar to automatically track the planned trajectories of a target. The system also provides integrated post processing capabilities in a single software tool.
The FARAD combines a fast waveform generation (Direct Digital Synthesizer chirp) with the use of coherent and non-coherent integration to enhance the radar's sensitivity and obtain an optimal signal-to-noise ratio. The radar can perform a RCS checking for aircraft and it does not need a dedicated flight mission or test range preparation at the site.
"Measuring in flight means in operational attitude, thus allowing for RCS acquisition in quasi-real mission conditions," said Mauro Bandinelli, ElectroMagnetic Engineering Division Director at IDS. "The following aspects can be accounted for: [Firstly] steady-state and maneuvering flight by deflecting control surfaces. [Secondly] both aerodynamic and inertial loads, which deform the airframe structures according to the actual flight conditions. It's worth noting that even small and uncontrolled deformations in structural junctions - like gaps, steps, discontinuities between two adjacent surface panels - can impact on the overall aircraft RCS, especially for low observable and stealth aircraft. [Thirdly] the FARAD can measure the RCS of an aircraft when its engine and power system are on, a condition almost impossible in a ground static measurement," Bandinelli said.
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