Jan 29, 2008 (LBO) – Sri Lanka is installing a hi-tech radar capable of detecting small boats of the type used by the Sea Tiger rebels as well as small aircraft, a media report said. The high-frequency (HF) surface wave radar, developed at a cost of 39 million Canadian dollars by Ottawa defence scientists and Raytheon Canada Limited, had been hailed as a major boost for maritime security, Canada’s National Post newspaper said.
Standard radar which use microwaves can usually only ‘see’ on a light of sight but HF or shortwave radio waves can travel over the curvature of the earth hugging the surface.
Surface wave radar (SWR) uses the ‘ground wave’ of a short wave radio signal to detect objects on the sea.
Over the horizon radar that uses the sky wave of a shortwave radio signal which bounces off the ionosphere is used to detect aerial objects thousands of miles away and can also be used over ground.
Canada’s federal government planned to build and operate eight radar sites on the country’s east and west coasts as part of its push to improve security in the aftermath of the September. 11, 2001 terror attacks on the U.S.
“But the government has shut down the exi