Tag Archives: GaN

GaN Upgrade

Ballistic missiles will soon be easier to detect and defeat. The U.S. Missile Defense Agency has awarded Raytheon Company a $10 million contract modification to continue the development of hardware and software that will add Gallium Nitride, or GaN semiconductor technology to the AN/TPY-2 ballistic missile defense radar.

A critical element in the Ballistic Missile Defense System, AN/TPY-2 continually searches the sky for ballistic missiles
A critical element in the Ballistic Missile Defense System, AN/TPY-2 continually searches the sky for ballistic missiles

GaN increases the radar’s range, search capabilities and enables the system to better discriminate between threats and non-threats. Gallium nitride technology also increases the system’s overall reliability while maintaining production and operational costs.

«AN/TPY-2 is already the world’s most capable land-based, X-band, ballistic missile defense radar», said Raytheon’s Dave Gulla, vice president of the Integrated Defense Systems Mission Systems and Sensors business area. «Adding GaN technology modernizes 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 defense radar to use GaN technology.

 

The AN/TPY-2 radar operates in two modes:

In forward-based mode, the radar is positioned near hostile territory, and detects, tracks and discriminates ballistic missiles shortly after they are launched.

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 Defense ballistic missile defense system, by guiding the THAAD missile to intercept a threat.

 

About GaN

Raytheon has led development and innovative use of 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. Raytheon has demonstrated the maturity of the technology in a number of ways, including exceeding the reliability requirement for insertion into the production of military systems.

Like A Hawk

The U.S. Missile Defense Agency has awarded Raytheon Company a contract modification to develop a transition to production process to incorporate Gallium Nitride, or GaN, components into existing and future AN/TPY-2 radars. This initial effort will support the transition from Gallium Arsenide to GaN technology, which would further modernize the ballistic missile defense radar and drive down system obsolescence.

A critical element in the ballistic missile defense system, Raytheon's AN/TPY-2 continually searches the sky for ballistic missiles (PRNewsFoto/Raytheon Company)
A critical element in the ballistic missile defense system, Raytheon’s AN/TPY-2 continually searches the sky for ballistic missiles (PRNewsFoto/Raytheon Company)

As demonstrated in other Raytheon-developed military radar applications, Gallium Nitride has the capability to enhance range, increase detection and discrimination performance and lower production costs.

Currently fielded AN/TPY-2 radars use Gallium Arsenide (GaAs) based transmit/receive modules to emit high power radiation. Raytheon and MDA are pursuing a retrofit approach to leverage Gallium Nitride elements.

«GaN components have significant, proven advantages when compared to the previous generation GaAs technology», said Raytheon’s Dave Gulla, vice president of the Integrated Defense Systems Mission Systems and Sensors business area. «Through this effort, Raytheon will develop a clear modernization upgrade path for the AN/TPY-2 radar, enabling the system to better defend people and critical assets against ballistic missile threats at home and abroad».

The AN/TPY-2 is a transportable X-band radar that protects civilians and infrastructure in the U.S., deployed military personnel, and allied nations and security partners from the growing ballistic missile threat. According to recent Congressional testimony by the director of the U.S. Missile Defense Agency, the threat is growing as potential adversaries acquire a greater number of ballistic missiles, increase their range, incorporate countermeasures and make them more complex, survivable, reliable and accurate.

An AN/TPY-2 radar can track a home run hit out of ball park from several hundred miles away. That’s just one of the features that have made this bus-sized radar the go-to radar for missile defense