India Indigenously developed Uttam AESA (Active Electronically Scanned Array) radar to be installed from 21st Tejas MK1A that is about 53 out of 73 MK1A to be equipped with indigenous AESA radar , reports Times of India.
It is developed by Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO)’s Bengaluru based Electronics & Radar Development Establishment (LRDE) laboratory.
“We will have the Uttam radar from the 21st Tejas Mk-1A to be produced. Uttam has performed better than anticipated in the trials so far. We’ve already signed an MoU with HAL,” DRDO chairman Sateesh Reddy was quoted in the report as saying.
The first 20 Tejas MK1A to be equipped with Elta EL/M 2052 AESA radar and in the rest MK1A fighters Uttam will be installed.
Although the report mistakenly wrote that 63 Tejas MK1A to be equipped with Uttam AESA but in reality 53 fighters to be equipped with indigenous AESA radar.
It is because out of 83 ordered Tejas for IAF, 10 will be MK1 standard Twin Seater trainer jets which will deliver before HAL starts delivery of MK1A.
This means IAF is going to get 73 Tejas MK1A fighters jets not 83 and as of now only AESA radar will only be installed in MK1A jets. The rest 50 MK1 jets will be upgraded to MK1A standards in future.
Uttam AESA is a multi mode solid state phased array radar. Considering the size of nose cone in MK1A, it can accommodate around 750-800 Transmitter/Receiver Gallium Arsenide based module.
As the Uttam is getting the power of 10 KW in Tejas, we can expect the tracking range of radar is around 150-170 KM for 2m2 object.
It can track 100 traget simultaneously and can engaged with 6 target at a time. Within a blink of second the radar can change from Air-to-Air to Air-to-Ground SAR (Synthetic Aperture Radar) mode or can perform both task at a time.
DRDO is also started working Gallium Nitride module based T/R module for Uttam AESA which will further increase the capability of indigenous system.
HAL is also planning to upgrade the entire fleet of IAF SU-30 MKI with integrating an upscaled variant Uttam of AESA. Currently SU-30 of IAF using PESA (Passive Electronically Scanned Array) radar which makes it vulnerable towards jamming.