Ground Master air de­fence radar for Es­to­nia


An of­fi­cial cer­e­mony was held on March 26 on Muhu Is­land in Es­to­nia to mark the en­try into ser­vice of the first Ground Master 400 (GM 400) long-range air de­fence radar sys­tem sup­plied by Thales Raytheon Sys­tems to the Es­to­nian armed forces. The cer­e­mony was presided by Es­to­nia’s De­fence Min­is­ter Ur­mas Rein­salu.

The sys­tem is the first of two radar sys­tems or­dered by the Es­to­nian Air Force and is one of 14 radars of the same type or­dered jointly by Fin­land and Es­to­nia. The GM 400 is de­signed for both fixed-site op­er­a­tion un­der a radome at the Muhu base and for rapid de­ploy­ment in the field. In a tac­ti­cal, truck-mounted con­fig­u­ra­tion with an in­de­pen­dent power sup­ply, it can be de­ployed in the field in less than two hours.

This GM 400 will be con­nected to the NATO net­work and can be in­ter­con­nected with all the other air de­fense radars de­ployed across Europe. It will bring Es­to­nia su­pe­rior de­tec­tion per­for­mance at low and high al­ti­tudes, higher avail­abil­ity and sim­pli­fied main­te­nance.

“The en­try into ser­vice of the Ground Master 400 is an im­por­tant mile­stone in our air de­fence pro­gramme. We look for­ward to the op­er­a­tional ben­e­fits of this new radar,” said Ing­var Pär­namäe, Un­der­sec­re­tary for De­fence In­vest­ments of the Es­to­nian Min­istry of De­fence.

“We are de­lighted that the GM 400 radar is now sup­port­ing Es­to­nia’s im­por­tant role in the NATO air de­fence in­fra­struc­ture. The new radar sys­tem will bring the coun­try an op­er­a­tional long-range air sur­veil­lance ca­pa­bil­ity and im­proved de­tec­tion per­for­mance against a broad ar­ray of mod­ern threats,” said Philippe Duhamel, CEO of Thales Raytheon Sys­tems SAS.

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