Army official: Sentinel upgrade selection coming soon

By Ashley Tressel / May 7, 2019 at 12:56 PM

The Army's project manager for cruise missile defense systems told Inside Defense in a recent interview he is "pretty confident" the Army will select a contractor to upgrade the Sentinel radar to the A4 version by July.

Col. Chuck Worshim said the A3 has gotten the Army through its previous mission but the service will need the A4 to defend against a near-peer adversary.

"We've been doing software and hardware upgrades along the way, but what we're coming to see is that we've done as much as we can," he said. "Not to say the A3 is not effective [or] performing well, but as you look out at the future threat that exists, it is the right thing to do to upgrade to a different radar, if you will."

The Army with the A4 upgrade is looking to make the Sentinel an active electronically scanned array radar and achieve greater range and more efficient identification, tracking and detection than the A3.

Worshim said the service should be on track for a "wholesale removal" of A3 radars in the 2030 to 2031 time frame but the A3s and A4s will coexist in the field for some time.

The A4 is expected to replace the A3 as the sensor for the Army's Initial Maneuver-Short-Range Air Defense program as well as the Indirect Fire Protection Capability, meaning it will eventually become a part of the command-and-control Integrated Air and Missile Defense Battle Command System, or IBCS.