GaN-based AESA Patriot radar takes another step to production readiness

TEWKSBURY, Mass. Raytheon’s Patriot Air and Missile Defense System takes another step towards production readiness as engineer’s upgrade the Patriot’s radar main array with Gallium Nitride (GaN) based Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) technology. Engineers hope to have the system up and running in early 2016.

"A GaN-based AESA radar benefits netted sensors, and gives Patriot greater capability and reliability while significantly reducing operations and sustainment cost," says Ralph Acaba, vice president of Integrated Air and Missile Defense at Raytheon's Integrated Defense Systems business.

The main AESA array is a bolt-on replacement antenna and is oriented toward the primary threat, while the rear panel arrays let the system look back and to the sides enabling a threat engagement in all directions.

So far engineers have completed the main radar array’s superstructure and development work on the power and cooling sub-systems. Additional upgrades will follow on integrating the sub-systems and populating the array superstructure with GaN-based transmit-receive units (TRLRU).

Retaining its compatibility with the current Patriot Engagement Control Station, the GaN-based AESA Patriot radar will work with an open-architecture common command and control (CC2) node.