China leads in use of passive radar in military

By Zhang Hui Source:Global Times Published: 2017/7/19 22:18:39

China has made remarkable progress in developing passive surveillance radar system and the system has been successfully applied to military use, said a scientist at a State-owned company which developed China's latest YLC-29 radar system.

"China is one of the countries that has made leading progress in the research phase and applied the system in military," Yang Guangping, chief scientist of the State-owned China Electronics Technology Group Corporation (CETC), told the Global Times Wednesday.

China's recently unveiled YLC-29 passive radar system, which can locate and track air stealth targets, is superior to the Czech-made Vera-E system in terms of real-time tracking, according to military experts.

The YLC-29 passive detection system, developed by the Nanjing Research Institute of Electronic Technology, also known as the No.14 Institute, under CETC, was debuted at the 52nd International Paris Air Show from June 19 to 25.

It uses widely distributed civilian radio frequency-modulated signals to detect, locate and track targets moving through the air - including stealth planes - without being detected, which greatly improves the system's viability and anti-jamming ability, according to CETC's official WeChat account. 

"The YLC-29 does not emit electromagnetic wave, which guarantees its safety," Song Zhongping, a Beijing-based military commentator, told the Global Times. 

Traditional radar detection systems are vulnerable to being jammed or attacked by anti-radiation weapons, as high-power radar jamming aircraft and anti-radiation missiles are extensively used in modern battlefield, according to the CETC.

"The YLC-29 is now superior to Vera-E and China's YLC-20 in terms of overall performance, such as detection range, anti-jamming technology and identification of small stealth targets," Song said.

The YLC-20 passive radar system, produced by the No.14 Institute, was unveiled in 2006.

The Vera-E passive radar system, which debuted at the Paris Air Show in 1999, mainly relies on receiving electromagnetic wave signals sent by targets to detect, locate and identify them. Thus the system cannot work if the targets maintain electromagnetic silence. Also, it cannot continuously perform real-time tracking, according to an article by Huang Guozhi, a senior editor at a leading weaponry magazine, published on news site Wednesday.

However, the YLC-29 can detect air targets even if they keep electromagnetic silence, Huang said.

China is developing a new type of radar system that combines passive and active radar, to better detect and track down air targets, said Yang.


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