In 2004 Raytheon Systems Limited (RSL) was awarded an important eight year contract, with two one year options, for Specialised System Engineering, Software Support and provision of IT services for the Solid State Phased Array Radar (SSPAR) at the UK's Ballistic Missile Early Warning System (BMEWS) at RAF Fylingdales. As a result of that contract win RSL now have a team of 12 personnel based at the site.
Raytheon had previously been involved with RAF Fylingdales for a number of years through a direct contract from the MoD awarded to Raytheon Technical Services Company and the Site Co-Ordination Installation Design Authority (SCIDA) contract that ran from 1992 - 2006. The BMEWS Site III radar was originally a mechanical-scan detection and tracking radar, constructed in the 1960's to provide early warning of ballistic missile attacks. However, Raytheon upgraded the site to a solid-state phased array design in 1991.
The radar’s current missions are to provide timely tactical warning and surveillance data on detected ballistic missile events and to contribute to the global Space Surveillance Network, intelligence preparation of the battlespace and force protection by identifying, tracking and providing warning of man-made objects in Low Earth orbit. Following agreement from the UK Secretary of State for Defence in 2003, the US Department of Defence (DoD) is upgrading the SSPAR so that it can also be used in the US ballistic missile defence system.
The Upgraded Early Warning Radar (UEWR) is an £80M project funded by the US MDA using Boeing as the Prime Contractor and Raytheon as the installation design authority for the radar upgrade. The radar is designed to provide sufficiently accurate tracking data for a US-based interceptor missile to eliminate a hostile ballistic missile attack from a country of concern. Throughout the modification process RSL engineers at Fylingdales have been at the forefront, working closely with our US Raytheon counterparts.