technology could soon render the stealth capabilities of America’s F-22
fighter jets and Europe’s Neuron unmanned combat air vehicles obsolete.
On display at the 9th China International Defence Electronics
Exhibition in Beijing in May was China’s DWLOO2 passive radar, which is
said to have a range of 500 kilometers and can cover the entire air
space with zero “blind spots.” The radar will be mainly be used for air
defense and coastal surveillance in complex electromagnetic
environments, with the ability to detect, locate and track air, sea, and
ground radiation within its coverage, the report said.
Perhaps even more impressive is that developments in Chinese
anti-stealth technology mean that passive radars can track all types of
aircraft through low-frequency radio waves without the pilots knowing
they are being observed or targeted, which is different to conventional
radars that send out high-frequency signals. This means the Chinese
military can track aircraft through signals from power sources such as
transmitters used for television, FM radio and cell phones.
Apart from passive radars, China’s conventional JY-27A air
surveillance and guidance radar is also said to be a world-leading
state-of-the-art meter wave band 3D long range air surveillance radar
capable of detecting stealth aircraft and guided missiles.
The paper stated that China owes its rapid advancements in
anti-stealth technology to the United States, which placed pressure on
the Chinese military after the Chinese embassy in Belgrade was hit by US
B-2 stealth bombers during the NATO bombing of Yugoslavia in 1999. The
US then stationed more B-2 stealth bombers and F-22 fighter jets at its
Guam naval base, forcing China to react to the threat, it said.
China’s determination was further stiffened, it said, after the US
successfully stopped the sale of 10 VERA passive radiolocators to China
from Czech radar manufacturer ERA Company in 2004. The US$55.7 million
sale was reportedly already approved by Czech authorities but was
canceled at the last minute after then-US secretary of state Colin
Powell lodged a protest with the Czech foreign ministe.