Alenia Marconi Systems (AMS), QinetiQ and Roke Manor Research Limited have begun
work on the Advanced Radar Technology Integrated System Test-bed or ARTIST. This
team was awarded a 44-month £8.1 million ($15.5
million) contract to build a demonstrator and to develop techniques suitable for
the next generation maritime multifunction radar (MFR).
The ARTIST program will cover preliminary testing of an MFR demonstrator in the
United Kingdom. Extensive trials of this technology demonstrator are expected to
take place in a follow-on program. The current program is being sponsored by the
UK MoD and encompasses collaboration with the United States. In the US the
program will be conducted by Lockheed-Martin and is being funded by the US Navy.
This cooperative approach will yield two demonstrators for each country, they
are known as the UK ARTIST and the US ARTIST.
The UK ARTIST will build on successful MESAR and SAMPSON radar systems. The
demonstrator will be developed, built and evaluated by the UK-based team and the
outcome could influence decisions on performance improvements to existing and
planned radar systems, including for the Type 45 destroyer and other future
platforms. In the long term the United Kingdom is pursuing radar technology to
detect small-sized targets in dense clutter such as the littoral environment.
This capability is expected to become critical for anti-air warfare and
anti-surface warfare beyond the 2010 timeframe.
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