Sharpeye Radar from Kelvin Hughes Provides Christmas Island Coastal Surveillance

Kelvin Hughes, a world leader in the design and supply of navigation and surveillance systems, is delighted to announce the permanent installation of an S-Band SharpEye™ radar and antenna on Christmas Island in the Indian Ocean.

An Australian territory, located 2,600 kilometres northwest of Perth, Christmas Island has been regularly used by immigrants and asylum seekers as a pathway to obtaining refugee status. This has placed significant pressure on the Australian government with its duty of care requirements, creating a need for a permanent radar installation on the island.

Drawcom Pty Ltd based in Victoria, Australia selected Kelvin Hughes to supply a SharpEye™ solution for the Defence Science and Technology Organisation (DSTO), part of Australia’s Department of Defence, because of the industry-leading operational capabilities of the company’s SharpEye™ radar. The vessels typically used to transport asylum seekers are small, slow-moving, wooden boats with an inherently low Radar Cross Section (RCS). Unlike traditional magnetron radar systems, the SharpEye™, with its solid state technology and Doppler processing, is able to detect these craft reliably even in the difficult sea states that can occur off the coast of Christmas Island. 

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Following the success of a trial that began in August 2011 involving a semi-permanent structure, the SharpEye™ radar has now been installed on a permanent tower. Providing coastal surveillance of the northern maritime approaches to the island, with the raw radar feed being transmitted directly to a control centre in Adelaide, the installation is now playing a critical role in managing border control as well as safety at sea.

It can be a challenge for the authorities to control the area, given high sea states, a large geographical spread and the continued threat of asylum seekers. SharpEye™ solid-state radar allows authorities to better meet these challenges.

Russell Gould, CEO Kelvin Hughes, commented: “The decision by the DSTO to select SharpEye™ is a further validation of the system’s technological superiority. Providing effective maritime surveillance off the coast of Christmas Island calls for the ability to separate targets from clutter even in adverse weather conditions.”

Source: Kelvin Hughes
Date: Dec 16, 2013