European Common Radar System Mk2 (ECRS Mk2).
The installation of the ECRS Mk2 radar system is part of an effort to increase the capability of the RAF’s Eurofighter Typhoon aircraft estimated to be worth 2.35 billion Pounds.
The British Ministry of Defense said that with the ECRS Mk2 radar, the Typhoon aircraft will be able to control the airspace more effectively.
The radar system will bring the latest electronic warfare capabilities with the RAF as it will allow the Typhoon aircraft to detect, identify and track various air and ground targets simultaneously.
RAF Air Force Commander Sir Mike Wigston said the ECRS Mk2 radar is a transformation to the country’s Typhoon planes.
“It will ensure that Typhoon aircrafts are always combat ready and able to protect our airspace and our allies from all forms of threats that are now changing rapidly,” he said.
The new radar system will allow the Typhoon pilots to destroy enemy air defense systems using high-performance electronic interception and engage targets from a safe position.
The ECRS Mk2 radar was developed by Leonardo UK in Edinburgh and Luton and integrated into the Typhoon aircraft by BAE Systems in Warton.
The Royal Air Force plans to equip all 40 Typhoon Tranche 3 aircraft with ECRS Mk2 radars and it is possible that Typhoon Tranche 2 aircraft will also be equipped with the highly capable AESA radar system.
Efforts to improve the capability of the RAF’s Typhoon aircraft will create around 1,300 jobs in Britain.
Typhoon aircraft are a key asset to the RAF for its Quick Reaction Alert (QRA) missions in the United Kingdom as well as on the Falklands Islands, protecting airspace from all forms of threat.
ECRS MK 2 compare to the AN/APG 81
The Leonardo ECRS MK 2 and the Northrop Grumman AN/APG 81 both claim to be the best active electronically scanned array (AESA) radars in the world. The same can be said for the Eurofighter Typhoon and F-35 Lightning-II where these two radars will live. The An/APG 81 has been in the F-35 since 2009 and the ECRS MK 2 will soon be available in the Eurofighter.
ECRS Mk2, also known as Radar Two, is developed from the ARTS and Bright Adder demonstrators, and from the Gripen E’s ES-05 Raven radar. Italy (Leonardo) has joined the UK’s development of the new European Common Radar System for the Eurofighter.
Eurofighter will be able to find and blind the enemy before the enemy can get close enough to obtain a radar lock. The ECRS Mk 2 is a multi-functional radar system that includes an electronic warfare capability, including wide band electronic attack. It has the ability to locate, identify and suppress enemy air defenses using high-powered jamming within a contested and congested environment. It can engage targets beyond the reach of threats even when looking in another direction and operate inside the range of opposing air defenses, remaining fully protected throughout. It also enables the Eurofighter to link up with future data-driven weapons to combat rapidly evolving air defenses.
AN/APG 81 is the successor radar to the F-22’s AN/APG-77. Over three thousand AN/APG-81 AESA radars are expected to be ordered for the F-35, with production to run beyond 2035.
The F-35 is able to find and blind the enemy before the enemy can get close enough to obtain a radar lock. It has long-range active and passive air-to-air and air-to-ground modes that support a full range of air-to-air and air-to-surface missions complemented by stealth features. The AN/APG-81 can operate as an EW aperture utilizing the multi-function array. It can suppress and destroy the most advanced enemy air defenses.
Both radars are very advanced and capable. The ECRS Mk 2 is newer and still in development and testing. The An/APG 81 has undergone extensive development and testing and is operational today. Specific details of each radar are classified.