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The decision on the future tactical air defence system (Taktisches Luftverteidigungssystem = TLVS) has one thing in particular: a long time frame. Accordingly, the Patriot modernization is taking place in parallel, so that Germany will continue to have the necessary missile defence capability. Yesterday, the Budget Committee of the German Parliament approved the upgrade of the Patriot air defence system to Configuration 3+, currently the most modern configuration available, with a total financial volume of around €120 million.

“14 digital radar processors, six modern control stations for the command posts and spare parts are to be purchased. Technical support will also be provided to equip the new facilities with Patriot equipment. By 2022, the modernized systems are to arrive in the troops,” the MoD stated. The service life is to extend thereby up to 2030.

Photo: Raytheon

For users, the new Modern Man Station (MMS) represents a significant improvement. The MMS have LCD colour displays with touch-screen function, which significantly increases both clarity and ease of operation. Threats can be detected earlier and countermeasures can be taken more quickly. In addition, the improved arrangement significantly reduces strain on the soldier.

The new Radar Digital Processor (RDP) is based on a commercially proven processor and increases data processing speed tenfold. This increases reliability by 40% and enables the integration of both digital and analog components. With the new processor, future software upgrades can be easily installed, including new target acquisition or the integration of additional sensors. The new processors also make it possible to fully integrate the PAC-3 guided missiles in the MSE version (the MEADS missile).

The Netherlands, Romania, Sweden, Poland and the USA are all currently in the process of purchasing the 3+ configuration or upgrading their existing units. By financing this upgrade, Germany thus remains in line with a majority of the seven other EU and NATO partners that use Patriot. It also ensures full interoperability with the Netherlands for VJTF (L) 2023.

Dorothee Frank