INDIA MAY MISS GETTING UPGRADED FLYCATCHER RADAR
By Bulbul Singh
09 Mar 09. Indian forces will find it difficult to procure a successor to the Flycatcher and RSFM radars as the majority of bidders have refused to field their radars for trials in India on Cost-to-Company basis. IAI of Israel, and Rheinmetall Defence of Germany have declined to field their systems for trials under this basis which requires that companies will have to bring their systems to India and not receive any payment for the trials. Such a decision will leave only Thales which is fielding its radar at its own cost. This is expected to lead to re-tendering of the programme.
The successor of Flycatcher is proposed to be employed for surveillance command and control and tracking for Very Short Range and Short Range Air Defence Missile Systems and Air Defence guns.
The Indian Defence Ministry floated a global RFP for the purchase of 66 Successor of Flycatcher and USFM radars in April 2008.
The 66 radars will be procured under Transfer of Technology. Under the arrangement, the OEM will have to transfer all the technology to state-owned Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL), the designated production agency. The OEM will quote for 12 units of Fully Forced equipment, SKD kits, CKD kits and indigenous manufacture kits. The radar systems will be assembled by BEL. BEL is currently manufacturing the Flycatcher radars.
The Indian Army is currently using BEL-made Flycatcher radars, a ground-based radar consisting of search and track facilities on a moving platform. BEL has produced the Flycatcher radars under an MoU with HSA, Holland.
The contract is governed by a 30 per cent clause and the total contract is estimated at over $300 million.
The new radar system will consist of a 3-D search and tracking radar, Electro Optical Sensor for passive tracking, Weapon Control Suite, Integral Power supply system and High Mobility Vehicle for mounting of the Radar shelter.
The radar should be able to detect low-level targets to a minimum of 30m in altitude. The minimum altitude should not be more than 30m and maximum not less than 10 kilometers.
The tracking radar should be able to control the fire of minimum of two guns and should be able to operate in severe sea, weather and ground clutters. It should be able to detect small low flying targets in any type of clutter (ground and rain clutters, chaff etc).
The radar should be able to operate effectively in a hostile ECM environment. The radar should be capable of being transported by air and rail and be able to negotiate contemporary assault bridges. The maximum speed of the vehicle should be not less than 40kmph on road and should be capable of sustained cross-country movement in deserts and plains.