SOURCE: VINAYAK SHETTY / FOR MY TAKE / IDRW.ORG
In less than a decade from now, India will be facing a new threat perception with the Bulk introduction of Stealth aircraft in the region by rival China which ultimately will also make way in hands of Pakistan thus creating Stealth Gaps in India’s Air Defence systems.
Bolstering current air-defence systems with the addition of counter-stealth measures should be taken at same priority has to introduce Stealth aircraft for Indian Air force, Since Chinese have invested heavily in next generations of radars designed to detect US stealth aircraft, we can assume that it will also be used against India in event of war.
Counter-stealth measures involve a complex array of surface-based and airborne based assets, which need to work with modern defence networks comprising of multi-layered arrays of sensors and effectors enhanced by strong communication networks to create strong measures to track low-observable technologies.
Since the adoption of low-observable technologies also for other platforms like unmanned aircraft, helicopters and drones for surveillance and intelligence gathering, India will need to work on developing a well-planned air defence network which could defeat a large-scale to small-scale intrusions by giving out an early warning to its operators.
Approach taken by China, Israel, Russia and the United States on developing counter-stealth technologies are different and there is no one set of radars or sensors which can do the job and India too will require to take an approach which will suit it the best.
Current generations of radar and sensor developed for counter-stealth are largely based on Multi-Sensor solutions where several radars and sensors function in sync for counter-stealth operations. Combining the long range capabilities of the UHF radar and the high resolution offered by the S-band radar is one of the popular systems which is been used to provide very long range and large volume search for accurately tracking low cross section class stealth targets .
What can be called a different approach is the use of Passive Radars which once positioned 50-60 km apart in series of the network which can create an effective radar fence which once breached by airborne objects can measure it with an accuracy of 300-1500 meters. Many countries are also developing many Passive radars specifically to detect low-observable technologies which involve various combinations to further improve its detection capabilities.
Conclusions : Since low-observable technologies developed by many countries are of different grade and capabilities which will keep improving, it could be unwise to say that Counter Stealth technologies developed by one country will also be effective for others, India will need to work and invest in its multiple range of its own counter-stealth technologies to boost its air defence capabilities against Stealth .