Modernization of radar installations of 54 French lookouts and semaphores continues at a good pace. Notified in August 2011 by the Directorate General of Armaments to Signalis, a joint venture between Cassidian and Atlas Elektronik, for a total of 2.1 million, the first phase (21 sites) was completed in late August. For the record, the first semaphore with that of LaHave, near Le Havre, uses his new radar since last February, the operation on all 54 sites (of 59 lookouts under the responsibility of the Navy) to be completed in summer 2013.
The work of nine additional upgrades should begin in the coming weeks and 23 could be ordered before the end of the year.
Two types of antennas
For traditional semaphores, located along the coast to monitor maritime traffic, the Navy wanted to renew its radars with new equipment with performances close to those already in place and considered sufficient. For this purpose, the sites are gradually equipped with radar Sperry Marine X-band (8-foot antenna) or S-band (12-foot antenna). But for the more sensitive areas, such as approaches to Brest and Toulon, the military wanted to have more efficient equipment. Thus, around naval bases Terma radars could have the new 5000 series (18 ft). With radar technology to solid state, these sensors should allow better discrimination distance. To do this, use the radar pulse compression with smaller powers but better distributed, with longbursts containing different pulses. In addition, these new solid state radars are replaced by the traditional magnetron electronic components, a component whose lifespan is generally low. The reliability of the system is improved, especially as amplifiers based on several electronic cards, in case of failure of one of them, does not prevent the radar function.
A multi-agency and open to Europe
These new radars, whether or Terma of Sperry, is one of the major detection capabilities SPATIONAV system, developed in France by Signalis since 2003. This device allows the detection means federate Regional Centres Operational Surveillance and Rescue (CROSS) and semaphores Navy, processes the information collected and provides all of the services covered by state action sea state, whether the Navy, Customs, Maritime Affairs and General Secretariat of the Sea (by the operations center of the coastguard function). The system automates the exchange between administrations and includes tools for decision support. SPATIONAV V2 aims to improve the current information system to make it more efficient and open exchanges withexternal actors , primarily the Member States of the European Union . Deployment SPATIONAV V2 last year and a half from March 2013 and will involve nearly one hundred sites in France and in West Indies and French Guiana and Mayotte.