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Highly Expeditionary Long Range Air Surveillance Radar (HELRASR)

HELRASR is an expeditionary system that was intended to replace the AN/TPS-59 radar system as the Marine Corps' long-range, 3-D, air surveillance, Tactical Ballistic Missile (TBM) capable radar. The USMC is defining an upgrade of the TPS-59 antenna to reduce weight and increase mobility of the system under the HELRASR program. HELRASR will have a vastly reduced footprint and improved mobility and will be integrated into the CAC2S. The radar will become a key component in Navy's Cooperative Engagement Capability and will be the Marine Corps' lead sensor in the development of the Composite Tracking Network.

HELRASR will be optimized to detect and track TBMs and air-breathing targets. HELRASR will primarily be used to support MAGTF Aviation during sustained operations ashore, as part of a joint theater air and missile defense architecture. The radar supports the MAGTF commander in Anti-Air Warfare (AAW) operations with en route traffic control to a distance of 220 nautical miles (nm) and TBM surveillance to 300 nmi. TBM performance is improved with the receipt of an external cue.

The HELRASR program currently had three years of design and development as of 2005, driven largely by the funding profile. This effort would help bridge the requirements gap between the MDA and the USMC, greatly leveraging the production-line startup of the TPS-59 and the engineering and development of HELRASR. The USMC planned [as of 2006] to migrate all air and ground radar systems towards the capabilities of two future systems, the Ground/Air Task Oriented Radar(G/ATOR) and the Highly Expeditionary Long Range Air Surveillance Radar(HELRASR), through technology development, risk mitigation and the phase-out of all legacy systems by 2018. The AN/TPS-59 (V) 3 will be replaced by the Highly Expeditionary Long Range Air Surveillance Radar (HELRASR), which will provide air surveillance of TBMs with increased of battlefield mobility compared to the AN/TPS-59(V)3.

As of 2006 HELRASR was in Concept & Technology Development Phase conducting risk mitigation. Milestone B was scheduled for 2nd Quarter FY 08. IOC was scheduled for 4th Quarter FY 2012, with FOC in FY 2017. The requested replacement radar system, HELRASR, was not funded in POM 08. If this initiative competes successfully in POM 10, then the IOC of the 11 replacement systems will be 2015 with an FOC of 2021.

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