Daily Archives: January 8, 2016

Royal Thailand Marine Recon | World’s Deadliest Special Elite Forces | Military Documentary Channel


Special Forces Documentary

Published on Dec 10, 2015

World’s Best Military Elite Forces | Thailand Marine Recon | Special Forces Documentary.

Welcome to SPECIAL FORCES DOCUMENTARY – home of the best documentary films and documentary movies on military and elite special forces.

Special forces, elite military units trained for unconventional warfare and covert operations

Read more about “World’s Best Military Elite Forces | Thailand Marine Recon | Special Forces Documentary”: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special…)

Subscribe to Special Forces Documentary to be the first to receive updates: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCbfQ…

Join us in our special forces documentary community discussion by following us in our special forces documentary Google+ page: https://plus.google.com/u/0/b/1115414…

Enjoy watching SPECIAL FORCES DOCUMENTARY – home of the best documentary films and documentary movies on military and elite special forces.

Thanks for watching ” World’s Best Military Elite Forces | Thailand Marine Recon | Special Forces Documentary”


Recommended reading 

The shooting never stopped : Here

Eagle Eye: Russia Testing New Generation Missile Warning Satellite


12:46 08.01.2016

The construction and renovation of the missile attack warning system is set to be completed by 2020, according to the Russian Aerospace Defense Forces

Russia will orbit a second new generation satellite in 2016 to keep a closer eye on ballistic missile launches anywhere in the world, the Defense Ministry said, Zvezda TV channel reported.

The EKS-1 – the first such satellite of the unified space-based ballistic missile warning system launched late last year — is currently undergoing trials in orbit by the Russian Aerospace Defense Forces.

The new generation satellites will ensure much quicker identification of ballistic missile launches by detecting their engines’ exhaust plume in infrared light.

The first early warning ground-based station for the new network has been built in the Altay region and it has passed state trials.

More such stations will be built also in the Leningrad, Irkutsk, Kaliningrad and Krasnodar regions.

Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu announced in October last year that Russia had started the development of a new unified network to detect ballistic missile launches, which would replace the Soviet-made ballistic missile early warning systems and feature  new-generation satellites, new ground-based space monitoring stations and advanced computer networks.

© 2015 Sputnik. All rights reserved

Eagle Eye: Russia Testing New Generation Missile Warning Satellite

See details of the Russian Early Warning System below



Like our FB page World Military Forum

EKS-1 to upgrade Russian Early Warning System

The first satellite, EKS-1, was lifted into space orbit by a Soyuz 2-1B rocket from the Plesetsk Cosmodrome in northern Russia on Nov. 17, 2015. (alert5.com)

The satellite is the first in a replacement constellation for its aging Early Warning System fleet, known as OKO (Russian for “Eye”).

OKO goes back to the Soviet era, a missile defense early warning program consisting of satellites in Molniya and geosynchronous orbits.

US-KMOAging Early Warning System fleet, known as OKO (Russian for “Eye”)

The system works by identifying launches of ballistic missiles by detection of their engines’ exhaust plume in infrared light.

The first OKO satellite was launched in 1972, with the system becoming operational in 1978 and fully utilized in the early 80s.

EKS-1 above and below when deployed

The aging system – and gaps in coverage due to failing satellites in the OKO constellation – has not impacted on the Russian capability, mainly in thanks to improvements to ground radar stations picking up the slack. However, replacement satellites have been in preparation for some time.

The path to the launch of EKS-1 (Unified Space System) “EKS-1 (Edinaya Kosmicheskaya Sistema = integrated space systems)”  has been ongoing for years, under the codename “product 14F142″. It will be classed as a direct replacement for OKO-1 and will be launched into a Tundra orbit – a highly elliptical orbit similar to a Molnya orbit.


The next generation nature of the satellite will mean it will be capable of picking up the jobs of around five or six of the old-fashioned OKO satellites, per comments made by a Ministry of Defense official to the TASS news agency. However, specific details about the spacecraft have not been revealed, due to the military nature of their role.

The launch was conducted by a Soyuz 2-1B rocket.

Soyuz-2-1 rocket is a descendent of the R-7 Semyorka, the world’s first intercontinental ballistic missile. The R-7 was designed by Sergei Korolev, and first flew in 1957. A modified version was used to launch the first satellite, Sputnik 1, on 4 October of that year.

The Soyuz, which first flew in 1966, was a modification of the Voskhod rocket featuring an upgraded and lighter telemetry system, and more fuel efficient engines. It was initially used to launch only Soyuz spacecraft; however with the introduction of the Soyuz-U in 1973 it began to launch other satellites as well.

The Soyuz-U, which remains in service, is the most-flown orbital launch system ever developed, having made over 750 flights to date, plus around 90 more in the Soyuz-U2 configuration optimized to use synthetic propellant.

The Soyuz-2 was developed from the older Soyuz models and features digital flight control systems and modernized engines. It first flew in 2004, and this is its twelfth launch.

Two variants are currently in service; the Soyuz-2-1A, and the Soyuz-2-1B. The latter variant was used for this launch, with the vehicle featuring an RD-0124 third stage engine, which provided additional thrust. The RD-0124 was declared operational on 3 May 2011.

EKS network design

The EKS network was designed to replace the Soviet-era early warning systems inherited by Russia in the 1990s. Along with new ground-based radar stations, the new satellites could fill potential gaps in the Russian early warning defenses left by the disintegration of the USSR. The Oko (US-K) early warning satellites.

mapThe field of view of ground-based radar watching for rocket launches beyond the Russian territory circa 2010.Planned early-warning radar coverage during 2016.

Deployment of the EKS network

In 2011, a then head of the Russian space forces, VKS, Oleg Ostapenko publicly announced the development of the Edinaya Kosmicheskaya Sistema, EKS, which can be translated as the “integrated” or “unified space system.” He stressed that the EKS was not an upgrade of the existing early-warning network, but an entirely new system.

As it later transpired, the full name of the EKS network in Russian is Edinaya Kosmicheskaya Sistema Obnaruzheniya i Boevogo Upravleniya, EKS OiBU, which can be translated as the “integrated space system for detection, battle command and control.” In 2012, reports surfaced that the satellites comprising the constellation had been called Tundra.

The overall development of the EKS network was centered at Moscow-based TsNII Kometa, which since 1973 have overseen early warning and anti-satellite projects in the country. (In 2012, it was renamed OAO Kometa Corporation). During most of the 15-year work on the EKS system, Viktor Misnik led TsNII Kometa after taking his position of the company’s Director General and Designer General in 1999. Aleksei Bychkov served as the chief designer of the EKS network. (758)

According to official information, the EKS network was designed for multiple tasks, the main of which would be early warning of missile attack, previously performed by Oko satellites. (The final Oko satellite was launched in 2012.) In February 2012, the then head of Roskosmos Vladimir Popovkin said that new-generation satellites would be able to detect both ballistic and cruise missiles.

On October 9, 2014, the Russian Minister of Defense Sergei Shoigu was quoted as saying that the EKS network could track various ballistic missiles, including those launched from the oceans and from the countries conducting missile tests. The statement could be interpreted as hinting that the coverage would not be truly global and one map of early-warning satellite locations released in 2003 showed inevitable minor gaps in the view of geostationary satellites over the extreme ice-covered regions of the planet around North and South Pole. These gaps in the northern hemisphere could be closed by additional satellites in elliptical orbits.

Unlike previous early-warning satellites, the Tundra was reported to be capable of not just detecting and locating a launch, but also of tracking a missile to its target. Known information about the design of the satellite (with one primary and side-looking scanning sensors), seemingly confirms that claim.

With this new capability, the space-based component of the EKS network would be fully autonomous in its early-warning capacity, (which previously had to be supported by ground radar), thus cutting a precious minute or so in warning the Kremlin about a potential surprise attack. Still, the system was to be closely integrated with ground-based radar. Working in tandem, radar and satellites would be less prone to false alarms and other errors.

According to one claim from the Russian Ministry of Defense quoted by TASS in 2015, one Tundra satellite could replace five or even six old-generation satellites. The report did not explain how such a drastic jump in efficiency could have been achieved, but probably referred to a wider view angle of each individual satellite.

At least one Russian source downplayed the revolutionary qualities of the new-generation early warning satellites, instead describing the latest developments in the field as an effort to make incremental improvements in the capabilities of the observation sensors to track missiles flying along complex non-ballistic trajectories.

Apparently, the EKS network would also perform some communications functions, such as the transmission of information to the anti-missile batteries or the commands for a responsive nuclear strike by the Russian strategic missile forces. In such a capacity, Tundras could complement or even replace already operational Meridian satellites. According to TsNII Kometa, the capabilities of early warning satellites allow to convert them into an informational system for Russia’s strategic weapons.

Multiple sources confirm that the EKS constellation would include slightly different satellites in two types of orbits. At least eight satellites would comprise the constellation. As of 2014, a total of 10 satellites were reported to be planned for deployment by 2018, probably counting all backup spacecraft in orbit.

Following the launch of the first satellite in the EKS constellation at the end of 2015, the Russian Ministry of Defense promised that the second satellite would fly in 2016.

Final constellation arrangement

Given a 12-hour orbit flown by the first EKS satellite, launched under name Kosmos-2510, four such spacecraft would be enough to monitor the North American continent practically 24 hours a day. In addition, two or three satellites deployed in the geostationary orbit would be enough to provide global coverage of the planet and two such spacecraft would be enough to track launches of ballistic missiles from the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans, from where they could reach the Russian territory. Additional satellites could provide a reliable backup operations.

According to some reports possibly based on the operation of the US-KMO network, each satellite could use its apogee path over North America for observation of missile launches, while during the following apogee over the opposite side of the Earth, the spacecraft could change attitude to provide ideal conditions for the illumination by the Sun in order to charge its batteries. Potentially, the reverse sequence could be used to monitor situation over Asia.

Ground segment


The main ground control center for the EKS network is known to be in Serpukhov-15 near Moscow. The exact location is near the Kurilovo village in the Kaluga Region. A new compact facility, or MKP, was built specifically for the EKS system next to the previous ground control center responsible for Oko satellites.

In addition, the existing second control center in the Far-East of Russia near the city of Komsomolsk-na-Amure is also expected to be involved in the operational control and the use of the EKS satellites. Traditionally, the ground station near Moscow was responsible for early warning on Russia’s western frontier, while the center in Komsomolsk-na-Amure was watching the Eastern flank.

According to the Russian Minister of Defense Sergei Shoigu, the new command post will be capable of automated processing of the tracking information from the satellites. Source russianspaceweb.com

Source: nasaspaceflight.com/ameblo.jp/russianspaceweb.com

Royal Thai Army procure Elbit Soltam SPEAR 120mm mortar launcher mounted on 4×4 truck.

The Army of Thailand, it has made progress on some military equipment procurement.

Center for weapons Center for the defense industry and military power that OIE. Neck area.
Announced the purchase of equipment, installation and Technology Transfer for project development grenade size. Propelled guns and 120mm tires topped 570.22 million baht from the Israeli company Elbit Systems Land and C4I.


Elbit own Soltam SPEAR system is a 120mm grenade launcher propelled guns mounted on 4×4 truck.
Understand that this development project grenade propelled guns wheeled 120mm of the OIE. Neck area. With Elbit Systems on the above, it seems to be a system that is mounted on 4×4 truck with the drugs. 1/4 tonnes of drugs. 50 or the drugs. 1 1/4 ton HMMWV.
In the case of heavy troop grenade launcher Infantry Regiment was likely to use. RY’s. In the tug. 120mm.
The armored car fitted with a grenade launcher 81mm BTR-3M1 air bombing and armored vehicles were stationed in 120mm BTR-3M2. Guards Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade, 2nd Infantry Guards.
It is a wheeled armored vehicle fitted with grenade The spot is the first to supply Thailand into a regular army.
But it is not certain that the grenade propelled guns to supply with 120mm tires from Elbit Systems Technology transfer will be provided to any unit.
However, it can be seen that in the past. The OIE. Neck area. Elbit Systems has collaborated with many such projects.The ATGM 155mm artillery wheeled being conducted.
Another part is just the news that the DTI has developed a missile with 120mm grenade fire. This is not to be used together or not.
(Recall that last year 2556 the Company established industry penetration. Has launched a grenade launcher propelled guns loaders 120mm on 1/4 ton 4×4 truck for the Marines. Navy post) (Translated by Google)


Elbit Systems SOLTAM SPEAR 120mm light vehicle-mounted Recoil Mortar System

At Eurosatory 2014, the Israeli Defense Company Elbit Systems has showcased its latest autonomous 120mm Recoil Mortar System (RMS) for lightweight 4×4 combat vehicles. The mortar system was mounted on an HUMVEE 4×4 light tactical vehicle.

At Eurosatory 2014, the Israeli Defense Company Elbit Systems has showcased its latest autonomous 120mm Recoil Mortar System (RMS) for lightweight 4x4 combat vehicles. The mortar system was mounted on an HUMVEE 4x4 light tactical vehicle. Elbit Systems SOLTAM SPEAR 120mm Recoil Mortar System (RMS) mounted at the rear of a 4×4 light tactical vehicle HUMVEE at Eurosatory 2014, International Defense & Security Exhibition in Paris, France.

SOLTAM SPEAR is a new patent-pending 120mm light vehicle-mounted Recoil Mortar System that provides ground forces with improved mobility, lethality and accuracy across a wide range of operational scenarios.

Elbit Systems’ SPEAR is a fully autonomous, vehicle-mounted, 120mm soft recoil mortar system for high mobility platforms SPEAR delivers effective fire support by combining the flexibility and lethality of accurate mortar fire with exceptional tactical mobility. The mortar is a derivative of the combat-proven soft recoil mortar which is muzzle loaded and turntable-mounted and is being used extensively by the US Army, NATO, the Israel. Defense Force and others.

The SOLTAM SPEAR 120mm mortar R is equipped with computerized aiming and navigation devices, enabling the mortar system to be operated autonomously and aimed without the need for external reference points. SPEAR can be integrated with a variety of battle management systems (BMS) and includes technical fire management, scheduled fire plans, a prioritization target process and an attack result forecast. The system also manages ammunition, personnel, assignments and serial number .equipment reports.

The system can operate independently with forward observers and/or deployed forces. The system can also be deployed on a standalone basis or as part of the battery/platoon configuration.

The targeting information is relayed to the fire control system (FCS) which computes the ballistic data and orders the electric drive system (EDS) to position the mortar barrel to the exact azimuth and elevation. The mortar fire control system (MFCS) receives feedback from the north finding system (NFS) and inclination gauge units (IGU).

The system generates a comprehensive tactical picture that includes both friendly and enemy forces along with additional battlefield elements, enabling .accurate threat analysis and an attack result forecast.

At Eurosatory 2014, the Israeli Defense Company Elbit Systems has showcased its latest autonomous 120mm Recoil Mortar System (RMS) for lightweight 4x4 combat vehicles. The mortar system was mounted on an HUMVEE 4x4 light tactical vehicle.

(armyrecognition.com )

Elbit Systems unveiled today the Soltam SPEAR 120mm autonomous, soft recoil mortar system, designed for light wheeled platforms. The company has already tested the system on a modified HMMWV. The new design introduces a second-generation development of the combat proven CARDOM system developed by Soltam, which has been widely deployed with the US Army on Stryker wheeled APCs and Israel Defense Forces Keshet M-113 based self-propelled mortars.

1396665466_600px-lambsCARDOM system developed by Soltam

The patent pending recoil system employed with this system reduces the barrel firing load (typically 120 tons) to less than 10 tons, therefore enabling a relatively light chassis to sustain the firing jolt within few seconds. As a result, the SPEAR can sustain a high rate of fire of up to 15 rounds per minute, and deliver accurate fire with a 30 meter circular error point (CEP). The mortar used is a derivative of the smooth-bore, muzzle loaded and turntable-mounted type used by the US Army, NATO and IDF.

As the Keshet autonomous mortar operational with the IDF ground forces, SPEAR is equipped with full digital computerized aiming and navigation system, enabling the mortar to be operated autonomously and aimed without the need for external reference points. (defense-update.com)

Autonomous Truck-Mounted Mortar: Here


The Thai Ministry of Defence (MoD) displayed its newest artillery project at the Defense & Security 2017 expo in Bangkok, this being an effort to create a 120mm truck-mounted mortar.

Aptly named the Autonomous Truck-Mounted Mortar, or ATMM, it is being developed by the MoD’s Weapon Production Centre in conjunction with Elbit Systems of Israel, with significant amounts of technology transfer occurring.

Soltam’s 120mm Spear recoil mortar system was seen at the exhibition mounted on a Tata LPTA 713 TC 4×4 truck from India. Its elevation range is listed as 800-1,511 mils with a traverse of 800 mils in either direction. 

Updated Nov 14, 2017

The Progress of RTAF’s F-5 Tiger II Capability Upgrade

04 Januari 2016

During the month of December 2015 it is reported the procurement in the Air Force, Army and Navy. In the Royal Thai Air Force included the progress of the project to improve the capability of F-5E/F Tiger II (designatin B.Kh18) of the 211 Squadron (Eagle), 21st Wing.

Is based on the image above which published in mid-December 2015,  that the F-5F with tail number 21104 from 211 Squadron 21st Wing has head look longer. The analysis that may have been installed new radar.

The shark nose of F-5E/F fighter aircraft which stationed in Royal Thai Air Force since 1981 or 35 years ago was upgraded up to three times.

First Capability Upgrade (1998)

In 1988, installed the display front and range weapons with HUD/WAC (Head-Up Display/Weapon Aiming Computer) from GEC Marconi, decoy system AN/ALE-40 and warning detection system AN/ALR-46 RWR (Radar Warning Receiver).

With the capability to use Israeli air-to-air guided missile Rafael Python-3, and the gun pod GPU-5 size 30mm, F-5E/F still stationed at the 403 Squadron 4th Air Division and then moved to 211 Squadron 21st Wing on the year 1994.

Second Capability Upgrade (2002)

In 2002, Israeli company Elbit improved the fighter aircraft F-5T Tigris and F-5E/F stationed in 211 Squadron 21st Wing, by turn of the cockpit mounted display with MFD (Multi-Function Display) pilot helmet mounted display, weapon sights DASH (Display And Sight Helmet) and joystick HOTAS (Hands On Throttle-And-Stick).

Weapon system capability to use air-to-air guided missile Python-4, however improvement of fighter aircraft F-5E/F, do not even have to change radar model AN/APQ-159 with such as the AN/APG-69 that was originally planned.

Third Capability Upgrade (2015)

In 2015, which was the last time. Although the Air Force document identified improvement projects F-5E/F 10 of these limit 2,050 million baht would identify only  structural upgrade and avionic system.

Python-5 is powered by a solid propellant rocket engine, provides a speed of Mach 4 and an operational range of more than 20km. Derby is a BVR medium range, basically an enlarged Python-4 with an active-radar seeker with range about 50km (photo : Miltechmag)

From the multiple data sources stated that the Israeli company Elbit is the project contractor. There is a possibility that the F-5E/F 211 Squadron has been updated to install with an Israeli Elta EL/M-2032 radar including avionic systems and new weapons such as new generation air-to-air missile Python-5 and Derby also DASH IV pilot helmets, which makes the F-5E/F’s capacity in aerial combat outside visual range (BVR : Beyond Visual Range) for the first time.

This improvement of this F-5E/F would be the last because of the limited lifetime structural parts of machines and production lines. It makes life Squadron F-5E/F Royal Thai Air Force on average by almost 45-50 years, may extend the wait time up to 2026-2031.



F-5E Tiger II & F-5T-Tigris/Super Tigris of the Royal Thai Air Force: Details

RTAF F-5 E/F third upgrade

Israeli Elta EL/M-2032 radar


EL/M-2032 is an advanced pulse Doppler, multimode fire control radar intended for multi-mission fighter aircraft. It is suitable for air-to-air and air-to-surface modes. In the air-to-air mode the radar delivers long-range target detection and tracking capability. In the air-to-surface mode, the radar generates high resolution ground imagery using Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) technology for smart weapons guidance. Air-to-Sea mode provides long-range detection and tracking as well as target identification capability.

EL/M-2032 air-to-air mode has a detection and tracking range of up to 150 km, the air-to-ground mode generates high resolution radar imagery of locations at up to 150 km, and air-to-sea mode can detect and classify naval targets at ranges of up to 300 km. The radar system weighs between 72 and 100 kg. To date, Elta Systems has integrated this radar system into F-4, F-5, F-16, Mirage and Mig-21. (deagel.com)

Jaguar DARIN-3 Upgrade Package's ELM-2032 MMR-2

DASH IV pilot helmets


post-2042-019927100 1286389385

Rafael’s Derby is a fully developed Beyond Visual Range (BVR) air-to-air missile. The missile offers excellent performance and maneuverability in both medium and short range engagements. The missile is also offered in an air defense configuration.
Main features:
  • Active radar seeker
  • Designed for both medium and short range
  • All weather performance
  • Look-down/Shoot-down capability
  • Lock On Before Launch (LOBL) mode for tight dogfights
  • Advanced programmable ECCM
  • Lightweight
  • Fully developed, tested and proven missile

Source: rafael.co.il/deagel.com/thaifighterclub.org

Boeing 737 AEW&C Wedgetail Early Warning Aircraft

The Commonwealth of Australia placed a contract worth more than $1bn with Boeing in December 2000 for the development and supply of the 737 airborne early warning and control (AEW&C) programme, Project Wedgetail.

Boeing is the prime contractor for the programme and team partners include Northrop Grumman’s Electronics Sensors and Systems, Boeing Australia and BAE Systems Australia.

The initial contract was for four AEW&C systems with options for up to three additional systems. The contract also provides a mission support segment and the associated ground-based support segments for flight and mission crew training. In May 2004, Australia exercised options to purchase an additional two aircraft.

Boeing Australia is responsible for providing systems, engineering and leading product support teams. In January 2010, Boeing was awarded $600m contract to provide project management and engineering services for the AEW&C programme for five years. BAE Systems Australia is to supply the electronic support measures and electronic warfare self-protection systems. Qantas Airways was awarded the contract for maintenance of the aircraft. The first two aircraft were completed by Boeing in the US; the remainder will be modified in Australia.

The first airframe for modification was rolled out in December 2002, ready for modification and installation of the radar and systems.


Then in May 2004, first flight of the aircraft with the radar and mission systems took place at the Boeing Field in Seattle in May 2004. Performance and flight handling tests were completed in July 2005 and the initial aircraft for modification in Australia arrived in January 2006.

The first two aircraft, capable of peacekeeping and training roles, were delivered to the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) on 26 November 2009. These two aircraft entered into service with RAAF in April 2010. The third aircraft was sent in May 2010 and the fourth in December 2010. In September 2011, the fifth aircraft entered service and the sixth and final aircraft was delivered in May 2012.

Wedgetail A30-004 unpainted 27th January 2009 – Image adf-gallery.com.au

737 AEW&C orders

In May 2002, the Turkish Government signed a $1.6bn contract with Boeing for four 737 AEW&C systems, with options on a further two. The sale received US Government approval in September 2003. Boeing is modifying the first and Tusas Aerospace Industries (TAI) of Ankara the other three. The first aircraft for local modification arrived in March 2006.

The first flight of the Peace Eagle was in September 2007, while the first aircraft modified by TAI flew in July 2008. Modification of the second aircraft took place at Ankara and Turkey in June 2008 and the mission system and flight checks were finished by the end of 2008.

The first 737 Peace Eagle was delivered to the Turkish Air Force in February 2014, with the second and third aircraft arriving in May 2014 and September 2014 respectively.


r-MilitaryPorn @reddit

In August 2006, the 737 AEW&C was selected as ‘sole candidate’ for South Korea’s E-X requirement for four surveillance aircraft to be delivered by 2012. The $1.6bn contract was awarded to Boeing in November 2006.

Three of four 737 AEW&C surveillance aircraft, called Peace Eye, were delivered to South Korea by May 2012. The fourth and last aircraft was delivered in October 2012.


Operators: Here

Boeing 737-700 aircraft

The aircraft selected for the Wedgetail is the Boeing 737-700 increased gross weight variant (IGW), based on the airframe of the Boeing Business Jet. It is flown by two flight crew with between six and ten mission crew members.

U.S. Air Force / Tech. Sgt. Michael Holzworth

The machine operates at an altitude of 30,000ft to 40,000ft with a maximum operating altitude of 41,000ft. It has state-of-the-art flight deck, avionics and navigation equipment. An extensive communications suite is also included, which has three HF, eight VHF/UHF communications systems together with Link 4A and Link 11 systems.



Minister for Defence Industry, the Hon Christopher Pyne MP and Minister for Defence Senator the Hon Marise Payne, today announced the Australian Government will upgrade the Royal Australian Air Force’s (RAAF) E-7A Wedgetail airborne early warning and control capability.

The $582.5 million upgrade is expected to be completed by mid-2022. Between $200 and $240 million will flow to Australian industry, creating 165 highly skilled jobs across the country.

Minister Pyne said the jobs will be spread across the Boeing Defence Australia offices, with 120 jobs in Brisbane and 45 between the RAAF Bases at Amberley and Williamtown.

Ventral view of wing and CFM-56 engine, with slats and flaps deployed (Author; M645/1000S)

The Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) will upgrade its fleet of six E-7A Wedgetail AEW&C aircraft, to include new advanced combat identification sensors; tactical datalinks; communications hardware and encryption system; and mission computing hardware and software upgrades. The fleet was delivered by Boeing from 2009 to 2012, following a troubled development. Australian defense minister Marise Payne announced the upgrade the day before she presided over delivery of the last two of 12 Boeing EA-18G Growler electronic attack aircraft to the RAAF.

Boeing Defence Australia will lead the Wedgetail upgrade under AIR 5077 Phase 5A with support from Boeing’s Airborne Surveillance Command and Control team in the U.S. and a network of suppliers. The program is structured into three separate releases and is expected to cost (U.S.)$443.2 million.

Release 1 of the upgrade will include target identification, mission computing upgrades and increased situational awareness through larger visual monitor displays, and it will be applied to two aircraft by early 2019. The fleet will subsequently receive integrated IP Chat communications upgrades into mission computing, datalink upgrades, a new wide-band satellite system and dual display upgrades by mid-2022. Source ainonline.com

Engines of the Boeing 737-700

CFM56-7B24 engine – Michael J Barritt

The aircraft is equipped with two CFM International CFM56-7B24 engines, each rated at 118kN.

It has a flying boom receptacle and a fixed probe providing dual in-flight refuelling capability. The CFM56-7B24 engine is also equipped with dual annular combustor for low emissions capability, common core and low pressure turbine.

The aircraft reduces fuel burn using innovative thermodynamic cycle.

CFM56-7B24 engine

Selected by Boeing as the sole-source powerplant for its Next-Generation 737 range, the CFM56-7B develops 19,500 to 27,300 pounds of thrust. Thanks to upgrades to the core and low-pressure turbine, the latest CFM56-7BE configuration delivers significant performance improvements for operators, including a 1% reduction in fuel consumption and a 4% cut in maintenance costs, as well as extended part lifetimes. The CFM56-7BE is fully interchangeable with other CFM56-7B engines and modules, and upgrade kits can be easily fitted to the CFM56-7B and CFM56-7B/3, providing maximum flexibility for operators.

CFM56-7B24 engine – airqueensland.blogspot.com

Versions -7B18/3 -7B20/3 -7B22/3 -7B24/3 -7B26/3 -7B27/3
Applications 737-600 737-600, 737-700 737-600, 737-700 737-700, 737-800, 737-900 737-700, 737-800, 737-900, BBJ 737-700, 737-800, 737-900, BBJ-BBJ2
Max. takeoff thrust (lbf) 19,500 20,600 22,700 24,200 26,300 27,300
Temp. at flat rating (°F) 86 86 86 86 86 86
Bypass ratio 5.50 5.40 5.30 5.30 5.10 5.10
Max climb thrust (lbf) 5,960 5,960 5,960 5,960 5,960 5,960
Length (in) 103.5 103.5 103.5 103.5 103.5 103.5
Fan diameter (in) 61.0 61.0 61.0 61.0 61.0 61.0
Number of fan/low-pressure/high-pressure compressor stages 1+3+9 1+3+9 1+3+9 1+3+9 1+3+9 1+3+9
Number of low-pressure/high-pressure turbine stages 1+4 1+4 1+4 1+4 1+4 1+4
Dry weight (lbs) 5,260 – 5,280 5,260 – 5 280 5,260 – 5,280 5,260 – 5,280 5,260 – 5,280 5,260 – 5,28

Source safran-aircraft-engines.com

Mission avionics from BAE Systems North America


The Advanced Systems Division of BAE Systems North America is supplying major elements of the aircraft’s mission avionics, including cockpit tactical mission displays, command and control consoles and mission computers.

Royal Australian Air Force

There are six multirole / multipurpose mission consoles with ultra-high resolution flat panel tactical displays installed in the aircraft. Production of the equipment is being carried out at BAE’s Advanced Systems Greenlawn facility.

The computers use advanced signal processing algorithms to analyse, categorise and prioritise data. This data is presented to the mission crew on an integrated situation display on the system console.

Royal Australian Air Force

Royal Australian Air Force

Royal Australian Air Force

Royal Australian Air Force

The open system architecture ensures the systems can be upgraded and extended. The AEW&C Wedgetail aircraft is compatible and interoperable with the E-3 and 767 AWACS airborne warning and control system aircraft.

AEW&C Peace Eagle aircraft, which are designated for Turkey, are being fitted with EADS Defence Electronics multisensor integration software.

Radar of the AEW&C aircraft

Northrop-Grumman MESA L-band AESA primary antennas. The sidelooking slab arrays provide beam aspect azimuth, range and heightfinding capability. The dorsal “surfboard” antenna provides coverage over the nose an tail sectors. Note the dual air inlets in the leading edge employed for cooling (Author; M645/1000S)

The most prominent of the many antenna and optical apertures is the MESA “top hat” AESA antenna subsystem shared between the L-band radar and its integrated IFF system. This design is both innovative but also the principal cause of numerous development problems which resulted in a four year delay against the intended schedule and loss in capability against the initial specification.

The dorsal fin mounts the transmit/receive elements for the left and right looking MESA slab arrays. These are a very conventional planar AESA design. The close proximity between the lower edge of the array and upper fuselage presents some problems with coupling between near field lobes and the aircraft structure. The MESA will provide reasonable heightfinding capability as the ~3:1 ratio permits sufficient phase difference across the vertical dimension of the array.

Northrop-Grumman MESA L-band AESA primary antennas. The cavity endfire is in the upper “surfboard”, and the sidelooking arrays in the vertical fin (Author; HS10)

The cavity endfire antenna mounted on top of the dorsal fin is intended to provide coverage over the nose and the tail of the aircraft. This design is the first attempt at a production cavity endfire array. It can provide beamsteering in the horizontal plane, generating a vertical fan shaped beam. The internal arrangement is a lower surface with an array of radiating elements, described as a “bed of nails” and a upper surface which is a conventional waveguide arrangement. The design radiates, subject to element phase control, out of the front or the rear openings in the cavity. Public disclosures are insufficient to determine the extent to which the close proximity of the fuselage and tail surfaces impacted performance either by shadowing, near field coupling, or far field reflection. Source ausairpower.net

Northrop-Grumman MESA L-band AESA cavity endfire radome (Author; HS10)

The MESA multirole electronically scanned array radar is being supplied by Northrop Grumman Electronic Sensors and Systems Division, based in Baltimore. Tenix Defence Systems of Adelaide, Australia, is supplying some components and modules for the radar. MESA provides 360 degree coverage and a range of more than 200nm.

The system’s variable track update rates and dedicated tracking modes allow the operator to track allied and hostile high performance aircraft while continuously scanning the area of operations.

This scan features an assembly of transmit and receive modules, operating at L-band and sharing three apertures to provide the 360 degree coverage. The radar system provides a high level of operational capability because the system is dynamically structured to match the changing mission requirements.

When an operator requires a long range view of a selected sector of the operational area, then the relevant system modes can be selected to initiate the search of that sector at more than twice the nominal uniform surveillance range.

An integrated identification friend or foe system (IFF) is combined with the primary radar and uses the same aperture as the primary radar, which avoids target correlation problems. The IFF system has an operational range of more than 300nm.


The distinctive ‘top hat’ radome provides a low aerodynamic drag profile while meeting the requirement for fore and aft coverage. Two large strakes are fitted on the underside at the rear section of the fuselage.

The strakes provide an aerodynamic balance to offset the effect of the MESA radome on the upper surface of the fuselage. In January 2005, flight tests of the aircraft were temporarily suspended while the upper surface of the radome was raised by about 100mm, to improve radar performance.

Two ventral strakes – airqueensland.blogspot.com

Type: Radar Altitude Max: 0 m
Range Max: 648.2 km Altitude Min: 0 m
Range Min: 0.2 km Generation: Early 2000s
Properties: Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) [Side Info], Non-Coperative Target Recognition (NCTR) – Jet Engine Modulation [Class Info], Continous Tracking Capability [Phased Array Radar], Pulse Doppler Radar (Full LDSD Capability)
MESA – (Wedgetail) Radar
Role: Radar, Air & Surface Search, 3D Long-Range
Max Range: 648.2 km

Source cmano-db.com

Countermeasure technology on the Wedgetail


The MESA radar is supplemented by a variant of the BAe Systems Australia ALR-2001 Odyssey ESM system, based on the Israeli Elta EL/M-8300 (8382) series ESM/ELINT system, which employs a suite of four antenna systems for the microwave bands, mounted under nose, tail and wingtip radomes, and a suite of ventral antennas for the lower bands. Cited EL/M-8300 (8382)  performance parameters are a DF accuracy under 1°, instantaneous bandwidth of ~4 GHz, sensitivity between -70 and -85 dBm, and band coverage between 500 MHz and 18 GHz. The production installation may employ optical links for RF signal transmission through the airframe. Source ausairpower.net

BAE Systems Australia is responsible for the electronic warfare self protection and electronic support measures subsystems for the Wedgetail.

Elta Electronics of Israel was selected to supply the advanced ESM/ELINT electronic support measures system.

ALR-2001 ESM

Nose ESM antenna radome assembly with exposed AAR-54 MAWS apertures – airqueensland.blogspot.com

Wingtip ALR-2001 ESM array  – airqueensland.blogspot.com

Aft ventral centre fuselage showing ALR-2001 low band antenna array  – airqueensland.blogspot.com

Aft tailcone mounting MIDS/JTIDS/Link-16, AN/AAR-54 MAWS, ALR-2001 ESM apertures and the ventral dummy AN/AAQ-24 DIRCM turret  – airqueensland.blogspot.com

Type: ESM Altitude Max: 0 m
Range Max: 926 km Altitude Min: 0 m
Range Min: 0 km Generation: Early 1980s
EL/ALR-2001 Odyssey – (Australia, P-3, OTH Harpoon Targeting, L-8300) ESM
Max Range: 926 km

Source cmano-db.com

The system provides 360 degree instantaneous surveillance and is similar to Elta ESM systems on RAAF P-3C Orion maritime patrol aircraft.

C3 suite


RF antennas for the extensive C3 suite, covering voice and data channels, are located primarily on the ventral and dorsal fuselage centrelines. Source ausairpower.net

Aft ventral fuselage showing C3 low band antenna arrays (Author; M645)

Ventral antennas for C3 system (Author; 645AFD)

In February 2002, Northrop Grumman Electronic Sensors was awarded the contract to provide the AN/AAQ-24(V) Nemesis directional infra-red countermeasures (DIRCM) system, augmented with the Viper solid state multiband laser.

AN/AAQ-24(V) Nemesis directional infra-red countermeasures (DIRCM) system

AN/AAQ-24(V) Directional Infrared Countermeasure (DIRCM) system / airqueensland.blogspot.com

The AN/AAQ-24(V) Directional Infrared Countermeasure (DIRCM) system is the only DIRCM system in production today that will protect aircraft from today’s infrared guided missiles.

Traditional IR countermeasures are not effective against the modern IR missiles that are growing in popularity among terrorist groups and in thirdworld countries. A Directional Infrared Countermeasures (DIRCM) system is required to defeat the latest and future advanced IR threats, and has a lower life cycle cost compared to other IR countermeasure approaches.

  • Simultaneously tracks and defeats threats in clutter environments
  • Fast, accurate threat detection and simultaneous jamming in all current IR threat Bands (I, II and IV)
  • Counters all fielded IR missile threats using a single generic jam waveform
  • Complete end-to-end self-testing features reduce life-cycle maintenance
  • Compatible with existing support facilities

Customized installation

The AAQ-24(V) is available in a laser-based configuration. Northrop Grumman then selects from a modular family of transmitters, jammers and missile warning systems to provide a customized installation best able to meet your specific platform, mission and budget requirements. Upgrades to existing systems are easy to install without further airframe modifications. Source northropgrumman.com

AN/AAR-54(V) Missile Warning System (MWS)

The AAR-54(V) is a fourth-generation Missile Approach Warning System now in production and available for use on virtually every platform – helicopters, fast jets, and tactical and widebody aircraft. In all applications, this compact, lightweight system provides outstanding clutter rejection, long range and short shot missile detection, rapid automatic cuing to the countermeasures system, and increased situational awareness capabilities via heads-up display (HUD) or radar warning receiver (RWR) display.

Designed for high performance protection, the AAR-54 passively detects ultraviolet (UV) energy from the missile’s exhaust plume, tracks multiple sources, rapidly and accurately classifies each source, and provides threat information to the countermeasures system for optimum response.


The AAR-54 can be interfaced to a chaff/flare Countermeasures Dispenser System (CMDS) or integrated as part of a Directional Infrared Countermeasures (DIRCM) self-protection suite. With its adaptive design, all applications can use common hardware and software. System simplicity allows for internal installations or external mounting in a pod or pylon. Source northropgrumman.com

Performance of Boeing’s aircraft

Brett Shillabeer @flickr

The aircraft’s maximum take-off weight is 171,000lb (77,110kg). It flies at an altitude of 30,000ft-40,000ft with a maximum operating altitude of 41,000ft. The time on station is estimated at more than nine hours.

The maximum dash and normal cruise speed of the aircraft are 955km/h and 759km/h respectively. The range is 7,040km and the service ceiling is 12,500m.


Laith Jobran @flickr


ROLE Airborne early warning and control
CREW Pilot, co-pilot and airborne electronics analysts and mission specialists
ENGINE Two CFM International CFM56-7 turbofans (27,300 lb thrust each)
AIRFRAME Length 33.6 m, height 12.6 m
WEIGHT Maximum take-off weight 77,565 kg, maximum landing weight 60,782 kg
SPEED Maximum 955 km/h, cruise 760 km/h
RANGE 7,040 km
CEILING 41,000 feet
  • Multi-role electronically scanned array (MESA) radar with range in excess of 400km
  • Electronic warfare self-protection measures including directed infra-red counter-measures, chaff and flares
  • Communication systems including HF, VHF, UHF, Link-11, Link-16, UHF SATCOM and ICS
  • 10 mission consoles

Specification airforce.gov.au

Main material source airforce-technology.com

Images are from public domain unless otherwise stated

Main image cqplanespotting.blogspot.com

Revised Jul 11, 2018

Updated July 14, 2021