Solid State Phased Array Radar System
The Solid State Phased Array Radar System (SSPARS, colloquially "BMEWS radar network'" as late as 2004) is a USAF radar, computer, and communications system for missile warning and space surveillance "at five (5) geographically separated units worldwide including Beale AFB, CA, Cape Cod, AFS, MA, Clear AFS, AK, RAF Fylingdales, UK, and Thule AB, Greenland." SSPARS completed replacement of the RCA 474L Ballistic Missile Early Warning System when the last SSPAR (phased array radar with 2500 "solid state transmitter" modules) was operational at Clear in 2001, the year SSPARS equipment included:
- Raytheon AN/FPS-123 PAVE PAWS Radar at Beale (FPS-115 IOC April 4, 1980) and Cape Cod (FPS-115 IOC August 15, 1980)
- Raytheon AN/FPS-120 Solid State Phased Array Radar at Thule ("2QFY87") with greater radar capabilities than the FPS-115 PAVE PAWS radars
- Raytheon AN/FPS-126 Solid State Phased Array Radar at Fylingdales with three faces for 360 degree coverage (constructed August 1989-October 1992)
- Raytheon AN/FPS-120 Solid State Phased Array Radar using an older antenna from the 1987 PAVE PAWS EWR in Texas (groundbreaking April 16, 1998, for the "Clear Radar Upgrade")
After the Fylingdales BMEWS radars had been replaced by Raytheon/Cossor AeroSpace and Control Data Corporation (embedded CDC-Cyber computer) at a cost of US $100M, in February 1995 the "missile warning center at Cheyenne Mountain AS [was] undergoing a $450 million upgrade program". The entire SSPARS became operational on January 31, 2001 when the "SSPARS Site" at Clear AFS (separate from the BMEWS site) had Initial Operational Capability. The Clear AN/FPS-120 was subsequently "upgraded to the AN/FPS-123 model" SSPA Radar, and the SSPARS was modified in the Early Warning Radar Service Life Extension Program The US approved sale of an[which?] AN/FPS-115 to Taiwan in 2000 and it was introduced in 2006.
AN/FPS-132 Upgraded Early Warning Radar
The AN/FPS-132 Upgraded Early Warning Radar (UEWR) is a series of phased array radar systems used for long-range early warning and space surveillance, operating as part of the United States Missile Defense and Space Surveillance Network.
The Solid State Phased Array Radar System began replacing PAVE PAWS when the first AN/FPS-115 face was taken off-line for the radar upgrade. New AN/FPS-123 Early Warning Radars became operational in (Beale) and (Cape Cod) in each base's existing PAVE PAWS "Scanner Building".
The UK and Alaska BMEWS stations became SSPARS radar stations when their respective AN/FPS-126 radar  and 2001 AN/FPS-120 became operational. In 2007, 100 owners/trustees of amateur radio repeaters near AN/FPS-123 radars were notified to lower their power output to mitigate interference, and AN/FPS-123s were part of the Air Force Space Surveillance System by 2009. BAE Systems began a 2007 contract for SSPARS maintenance. The SSPARS radar electronics was subsequently upgraded, e.g., the Beale radar and the Fylingales FPS-126 each became an AN/FPS-132 Upgraded Early Warning Radar (UEWR) by Raytheon. The Beale AN/FPS-123 was upgraded to a Raytheon AN/FPS-132 (UEWR) with capabilities to operate in the Ground-based Midcourse Defense (GMD) ABM system—the Beale UEWR included "Avionics", "T/R modules", "FEX/TTG", "BSG", "Signal Processor", and other changes. After additional UEWR installations for GMD at Thule Site J and the UK (contracted 2003), a 2012 ESD/XRX Request for Information for replacement, and remote operation, of the remaining "PAVE PAWS/BMEWS/PARCS systems" at Cape Cod, Alaska, and North Dakota was issued. The Alaska AN/FPS-132 was contracted in fall 2012 and the Cape Cod installation in 2013.
- Solid-state phased array radar
- Each radar installation has multiple faces, where each face provides a 120-degree coverage.
- Operating frequency: Ultra high frequency (UHF)
- Range: 3,000 miles
- Beale Air Force Base, California
- RAF Fylingdales, United Kingdom
- Thule Site J (Thule Air Base), Greenland
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BMEWS was replaced by the Solid State Phased Array Radar System (SSPARS) in 2001. ... CINCAD (Command in Chief, Aerospace Defense Command)
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AN/FPS-49 has a traditional azimuth bearing assembly (race and steel balls) while the AN/FPS-92 has a hydrostatic bearing (antenna floats on a high pressure film of hydraulic fluid). AN/FPQ-16 Radar Set, Perimeter Acquisition Radar Attack Characterization System - PARCS: PARCS is a single faced phased array radar system consisting of AN/FPQ-16 radar and an AN/FSQ-100 computer system located at Cavalier AFS, ND. The primary mission of the PARCS is to provide the CMC with TW/AA data on all SLBMs penetrating the coverage area. ... FORCE MANAGEMENT SYSTEM (FMS) PROVIDES THE CONUS NORAD REGION COMMANDER WITH TIME SENSITIVE INFORMATION
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in March 1963 an Air Ministry review of ABM systems said of MIDAS that ‘performance to date has been disappointing’.78 … A teletype circuit was established between NORAD and the ADOC in Britain to pass information derived from Site 1 at Thule.95 This was supplemented by a voice circuit with agreed formatted messages, and both were operational by October 1960. … AN/FPS-49 Range resolution 240 nm Maximum range 2,650 nm Minimum target at 1,650 m 2.8 m2 Impact accuracy North America 135 nm
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North American Aerospace Defense Command and U.S. Space Command command center. ... For more than 30 years, the crews operating the missile warning center inside Cheyenne Mountain have maintained an early warning trip line [for] incoming ballistic missiles
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Technical Facility/Scanner Building (HAER No. MA-151-A), which houses the AN/FPS-1152 radar and related equipment… PAVE PAWS Site 1 … AN/FSS-7…designed by Avco Electronics Division… The first two PAVE PAWS sites in Massachusetts and California represented the first two-faced phased array radars deployed by the U.S.
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Perimeter Acquisition Vehicle Entry Phased-Array Weapons System (PAVE PAWS)
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The PAVE PAWS and BMEWS Beam Steering Unit (BSU), Receiver Exciter (REX), Receiver Beam Former (RBF), Array Group Driver (AGD), Radio Frequency Monitor (RFM), Frequency Time Standard (FTS), and the Corporate Feed (CFD) were built for these five radars in the late 1970's and were upgraded in the 1980's. … The PARCS Signal Processing Group (SPG) has received only "band-aid" fixes since the site's Initial Operating Capability (IOC) in 1975
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