About RETIA Pardubice and its current defence projects – protection against drones and more

About RETIA Pardubice and its current defence projects – protection against drones and more
Caption: ReGUARD at IDET 2019
13 / 02 / 2020, 10:00

In 2019 RETIA introduced the first Czech 3D radar, which has a wide range of applications. Radar called ReGUARD is designed for both military and civilian use. As far as the military domain is concerned, RETIA has also become an important part of the MADR radar project for the Czech Army and is also working on other programs. We asked Roman Bohunek, Chairman of the Board of Directors of RETIA about current activities and plans of the Pardubice company.

  • At IDET 2019, you introduced the latest addition to your company's offer. It was the ReGUARD radar. What makes it special?

First of all, it is a three-dimensional radar, so we are the first Czech company to design this type of radar. It falls into the category of pulse-doppler 3D radars, which brings the advantage of greater range and better distances in comparison to fixed-wave radars. The technology used also allows the application of more sophisticated methods for target type detection compared to fixed wave radars. Another specific feature of ReGUARD is that it uses both the electronic radar beam deflection technology and the mechanical rotation of the radar head to search the area of ​​interest. Last but not least, it is exceptional in its dimensions, is very compact and relatively light, for example, the radar head weighs just 65 kg.

See also: RETIA will exhibit its radar systems at DEFEXPO 2020 - India

  • What is it primarily intended for and what are its options or abilities?

Of course, ReGUARD offers new applications thanks to the 3D technology. We created ReGUARD primarily for the detection and simultaneous tracking of ground targets and slow low-flying objects with a small reflective surface, even smaller than the ReVISOR radar, for example. It is therefore also suitable for the detection of unmanned aerial vehicles, which gives it a prerequisite to assert itself in the increasingly discussed field of protection against various drones. Their numbers are growing rapidly, not only in the armed and security forces. Control of their operation and the associated localization of them becomes an acute need both for armed forces and for example in air traffic control systems. Drones can be a military threat, but also a security risk to air travel.

  • A few months ago in Saudi Arabia armed drones attacked oil facilities. Would ReGUARD be able to locate attackers of this type and allow anti-aircraft defence to respond appropriately?

Yes, ReGUARD is able to locate and track slow low-flying aircraft with a small reflective surface, which are typical features of drones. ReGUARD is suitable for the protection of borders or important infrastructure complexes such as nuclear power plants or chemical plants, it is also well-suited in specialized anti-drone systems, for example in airport protection, but also in military air defence systems. This is due to its versatility, because it can be used as a separate sensor or it can be connected to a higher system as one of its components. Information about the objectives that ReGUARD acquires can therefore be sent via digital command and control systems, for example, to the superior command level or directly to anti-aircraft systems.

ReGUARD, thanks to its electronic radar beam deflection capability, allows you to quickly search the area of ​​interest so that it can identify and track priority targets in seconds. In the case of objects with a small reflective surface, such as drones, its instrument range is 18 km with a height limit of up to 3 km, while in ground target mode, the instrument range is also 18 km.

See also: Retia a.s. - radars, command and control, air defence systems (since 1993)

  • Can you briefly describe how ReGUARD works? How difficult is it to maintain and repair?

We offer ReGUARD in portable, static or mobile configuration. All designs can operate continuously for an unlimited period of time, with no more than ten minutes to start up. ReGUARD operates in two basic modes, sector or full circle. The modes differ in the way they search space in the azimuth. In sector mode, the radar beam is deflected only electronically in both azimuth and elevation. In a full-circle, the radar sensor head rotates on a rotating base at a speed of 15 circles per minute, and electronic beam deflection is mainly used for elevation deflection.

The ReGUARD system also includes a compact, profitable workstation for the operator, which can also be placed in distant areas away from the position of the radar sensor. ReGUARD has a built-in automated diagnostic system, which facilitates its maintenance and the operator has a constant and immediate overview of the technical condition of the radar. The concept of radar consists of a network of identical modules, which allows the radar to operate even in the event of failure or failure of some components and also allows their rapid replacement. For durability and reduced maintenance, we have also chosen a fan-less passive cooling radar sensor. This allows ReGUARD to be used even in very demanding climatic conditions.

(Part II)

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