Innovation and Complexity: My Journey Through Digital AESA Radars

Defense market is increasingly coping with complexity to reach enhanced performance, flexible functionalities and new capabilities. System of systems, a set of multiple systems operating cooperatively, is an expression of such a complexity, which aims at overcoming modern mission challenges with performance greater than the sum of the single systems. For sure, one of the must-have of this kind of system suite is the radar and, shifting a bit the perspective, a radar itself can be seen as a collection of systems – usually referenced as subsystems.

During this talk, the speaker will take you along her path in facing modern radar complexity. Main stops in this 30-minute trip will be enabling technologies in RF and high speed digital, architectures, high performance signal processing and leading approaches in design and development. In fact, to reach cutting edge results in terms of performance, multifunctionality and modularity, defense market is shifting towards massive digital Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radars, better known as Digital Array Radar (DAR). Needless to say, the quality and effectiveness of this enhanced system, require to deal with added complexity not only during operation, but also during early design stages. New design challenges deal with RF spectrum congestion, highly distributed architectures and big data processing. To effectively address the new challenges of such systems, design and development based on digital modelling, as in Model Based Engineering (MBE), is a keystone.