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AN/SPS-49(V) Radar Set

Last updated: 20 Sep 2021

The AN/SPS-49(V) volume air surveillance radar provides long range, two dimensional, air search capabilities to CVN-68 Class, LHD-1 Class, LSD-41/49 Class, LHA-6 Class and some CG-47 Class ships. The AN/SPS-49(V) is an integral component of the Cooperative Engagement Capability (CEC) and Ship Self Defense System (SSDS) Programs. The radar is a principal input to the Air Warfare combat system and also provides backup air control capabilities.
Operating across both Ultra High Frequency (UHF) and L-,band the long-range (250 nautical miles) AN/SPS-49(V) radar provides automatic detection and reporting of targets within its surveillance volume. The AN/SPS-49(V) performs centroiding of target range, azimuth, amplitude, Electronic Counter Measure (ECM) level background, and radial velocity with an associated confidence factor to produce contact data for tracking and command and control systems. In addition, contact range and bearing information is provided for display on standard plan position indicator (PPI) consoles. The AN/SPS-49(V) uses a line-of-sight, horizon-stabilized antenna to provide acquisition of low-altitude targets in all sea states, and also utilizes an upspot feature to provide coverage for high diving threats in the high diver mode. External control of AN/SPS-49(V) modes and operation by the command and control system, as well as processing to identify and flag contacts with special alerts are provided for self-defense support. The AN/SPS-49(V) has several operational features to allow optimum radar performance such as an automatic target detection capability with pulse doppler processing and clutter maps, reliable detection in normal and severe types of clutter; an electronic counter-countermeasures capability for jamming environments; a moving target indicator capability to distinguish moving targets from stationary targets and to improve target detection during the presence of clutter and chaff; the MPU to increase detection capabilities and reduce false contacts; and a Coherent Sidelobe Cancellation (CSLC) feature.

The AN/SPS-49(V) radar set includes seven major functional elements: Antenna, Transmitter/Receiver, Frequency Converter, Signal Data Processor, Video Processor, integrated Built-In Test (BIT) system and Radar Set Control (RSC). The Signal Data Processor contains a MC68020 CPU that works in conjunction with MC68882 floating point co-processor. These components are used to support the AN/SPS-49(V) capability to track radar targets and convert data into the required message format for the Navy Tactical Data System (NTDS) interconnections. The RSC is a user interface panel consisting of analog lamp indicators switches and dials enabling the operator to modify/evaluate radar settings and alert lamps.

The AN/SPS-49(V) Radar system is a Platform Information Technology (PIT) designated system and not configured for network use. The system does not utilize routers, switches or other IT products. The system does not process or connect to other systems that process IT or business data. The system does not interface with the Global Information Grid (GIG). The AN/SPS-49(V) is a warfare system that operates in real time.

Due to diminishing manufacturing sources and material shortages (DMSMS) and obsolescence, a technical refresh of the AN/SPS-49A(V)1 electronics is being considered. The existing antenna would remain in place.
Developed in the 1960�s, the AN/SPS-49(V) has been in service over 50 years. In the early 1980s, the (V)5 modification provided an automatic target detection (ATD) capability and improved Electronic Counter-Counter Measure (ECCM) features. Remaining only on Guided Missile Cruisers (CG), the AN/SPS-49(V)7 is identical to the (V)5 variant except that it utilizes a cooling system modified for the AEGIS Combat System and the (V)8 which also uses the AEGIS cooling system and includes an embedded tracker which allows the radar to interface directly with the Aegis combat system.

The A(V)1 modification in 1996 included a Medium Pulse Repetition Frequency (PRF) Upgrade (MPU) to increase detection capabilities and improved clutter rejection. Field Change 5 (FC5) upgraded the transmit function and converted the unreliable and obsolete glass tube transmitter modulator to solid state technology. Introduction of the Solid State Modulator (SSM) eliminated poor shock performance of high power wire-wound resistors and dependence on foreign sole-source switch-deck vacuum tubes. FC 5 installations completed in March of 2016, and FC-6 installations which replaces 2A18 Top Plate Assembly for improved reliability are ongoing.
General Characteristics
Primary Function: Long range (250 nautical miles), two dimensional, L-Band volume air surveillance radar
Contractor: Raytheon Portsmouth, Rhode Island (Original Equipment Manufacturer)
Weight: Above Deck: 3,500 lbs; Below Deck: 11,200 lbs
10 Land based
-A(V)1 - 6
-(V)5 - 2
-(V)7/8 - 1
-(V)4 - 1 (sunsetting in 2017)

40 Ships
-A(V)1 - 31
-(V)8 - 5
-(V)7 - 4

Point of Contact
Naval Sea Systems Command
Office of Corporate Communications

Washington, D.C. 20376

(202) 781-4123


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