Thursday, November 4, 2010


The SMART-L is an active phased array radar designed for long-range search according to NATO specifications for a Volume Search Radar. SMART-L stands for Signal Multibeam Acquisition Radar for Tracking, L band. It was developed and manufactured by the firm Hollandse Signaalapparaten (Signaal), now Thales Naval Nederland. It is used on ships by both the German and the Dutch Navy.

The SMART-L is a multibeam radar, which uses 16 antenna elements to simultaneously generate 14 beams by digital beamforming. The beams' vertical directions are controlled electronically, stabilization against the ships movements is also done electronically. Horizontally direction is controlled mechanically by rotating the antenna array. The radar is able to detect targets up to 480km away by a software modification called Extended Long Range (ELR) Mode. With these results the SMART-L radar is one of the most capable long-range radar in the world for detecting tactical as it can be extended to 2000km ballistic missiles.

The SMART-L was designed to fulfil medium range detection of the newest generation of small „stealth” air targets; long range detection of conventional aircraft; guidance support for patrol aircraft; surface surveillance; and high ECCM performance.

Specifications of the SMART-L

Antenna system:

Dimensions; 8.4 × 4 × 4.4 m, 7800 kg
Number of antenna elements: 16 for transmitting and receiving, 8 more for receive only
Number of beams formed: 16
Beamwidth 2.2° horizontal, 10–70° vertical
Polarization: vertical
Frequency: D band (former L band)
Rotational speed: 12 rpm
IFF system integrated, D band

Maximum detection ranges:

Stealth missiles: 85 km
Fighter aircraft: 400 km
Patrol aircraft: 600 km
Maximal numbers of tracked targets:
Airborne: 1000
Seaborne: 100
Radar jamming sources: 32