SMART-S Radar (The Netherlands and Others)

- , May 22, 2018

Quick Facts

Role and Mobility Medium and Long-Range Air and Surface Surveillance, Early Warning; Ship-mobile
Frequency S-Band
Range Medium Range: 150 km, Long Range: 250 km
Air Defense Interceptor Systems Evolved Sea-Sparrow Missile,
Targets Small high-speed anti-ship missiles, Sea-skimming missiles, Stealth missiles, Helicopters, UAVs
Status/Exports Operational; Turkey, Morocco, Colombia, Venezuela, France, Canada, Denmark, New Zealand, Germany
Producer Thales Nederland


The Signal Multibeam Acquisition Radar for Tracking or SMART-S radar is a naval, all-weather medium to long range air and surface surveillance multibeam passive electronically scanned array 3D radar.[i] The SMART-S system has two operating modes, medium range up to 150 km and long range up to 250 km, making it a very versatile system in the field. It provides automatic detection, track initiation, and track maintenance of both air and surface threats, providing gapless coverage from the sea surface upward.[ii] Designed to be placed on all types of naval vessels, the SMART-S is able to employ electronic countermeasures to prevent jamming and can track up to 160 air targets and 40 surface targets simultaneously.[iii] The upgraded version, SMART-Mk2, includes a radar transmitter/receiver from Turkey’s ASELAN and has been exported to multiple navies around the world.

Strategic Implications

The SMART-S radar is strategically valuable because of its versatility. Its two operating systems allow an operator to alter its primary goals depending on predicted threats and the area being scanned.[iv] It also offers short-range scanning for helicopter threats and detection of UAVs. The upgraded version, SMART-S Mk2, was designed with a focus on long system lifetime meaning that the system can support long missions without extensive maintenance aboard the ship.[v] Also, its ability to detect, track, and identify up to 160 air targets and 40 surface targets at once, makes it invaluable in high clutter areas and areas with a high probability of incoming threats. Lastly, the SMART-S Mk2 offers countermeasures useful in war and bad weather that declutter airspace and prevent jamming of the systems, allowing the system to work in any conditions for the best air defense possible.[vi]

Recent News


    September 2014: Thales Nederland was awarded a contract by Lockheed Martin Canada to deliver SMART-S Mk2 radars for integration into Royal New Zealand Navy frigates.

    March 2007: SMART-S Mk2 radar to be installed on first Danish Flexible Support Ship.

    January 2007: SMART-S Mk2 passed its Factory Acceptance Test (FAT) meeting all the requirements and even exceeding some specifications.[vii]

    September 2005: Danish Navy’s SMART-2 Mk2 program successfully completes engineering and initial production phases.[viii]

    December 2003: The Royal Danish Navy orders two SMART-S Mk2 systems for its Flexible Support Ship Program.

    September 2003: Thales Nederland introduced the upgraded variant of the SMART-S, the SMART-S Mk2.

    1990: SMART-S was tested at sea.[ix]




    [iii] Ibid.