The US Missile Defence Agency has awarded Raytheon a $10 million contract modification to continue the development of hardware and software that will add GaN semiconductor technology to the AN/TPY-2 ballistic missile defence radar.
GaN increases the radar’s range, search capabilities and enables the system to better discriminate between threats and non-threats. GaN technology also increases the system’s overall reliability while maintaining production and operational costs, according to the company.
“AN/TPY-2 is already the world’s most capable land-based, X-band, ballistic missile defence radar,” said Raytheon’s Dave Gulla, vice president of the Integrated Defence Systems Mission Systems and Sensors business area. “Adding GaN technology modernises the system so it can defeat all classes of ballistic missiles in extreme operational environments.”
The AN/TPY-2 is on pace to be the world’s first transportable, land-based ballistic missile defence radar to use GaN technology.
The AN/TPY-2 radar operates in two modes:
1. In forward-based mode, the radar is positioned near hostile territory, and detects, tracks and discriminates ballistic missiles shortly after they are launched.
2. In terminal mode, the radar detects, acquires, tracks and discriminates ballistic missiles as they descend to their target. The terminal mode AN/TPY-2 is the fire control radar for the Terminal High Altitude Area Defence ballistic missile defence system, by guiding the THAAD missile to intercept a threat.
Raytheon has been developing GaN for 19 years and has invested more than $200 million to get this latest technology into the hands of military members faster and at lower cost and risk.