In partnership with the Swedish Defence Materiel Administration (FMV), Thales will deliver and install SMART-L Multi-Mission Fixed long-range radars, strengthening air surveillance capabilities and extending Swedish airspace sovereignty.

Long-range radars are crucial assets in gaining and upholding airspace control and sovereignty. Designed to detect and track multiple targets at extended ranges actively, these radars serve as continuous monitors, tracking the movements of both friendly and hostile aerial systems.

Establishing a reliable and up-to-date Recognized Air Picture (RAP) with evolving threats and conflicts has become increasingly challenging.

The SMART-L MM/F radar, already operational in land and naval versions with the Royal Netherlands Navy and Royal Netherlands Air Force, is a next-generation Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) multi-mission radar.

It will bolster Swedish air surveillance and extend capabilities in Ballistic Missile detection and space domains by offering long-range air and surface surveillance capabilities and precise target designation.

“We are proud to be selected by FMV to enhance Swedish air surveillance capability in an increasingly challenging environment.​,” said Christophe Salomon, Executive Vice President of Thales Land and Air Systems. 

“FMV has chosen the long-range SMART-L MM/F radar as a major component of the sensor chain program, and with this contract, Thales will play an important role in contributing to Sweden’s national airspace sovereignty.”

The SMART-L Multi-Mission (MM/F) radar is equipped with advanced high-end techniques, resulting in long-range performance of up to 2000 km. It’s digital architecture and AESA antenna enable easy upgradability and ensure readiness for future enhancements throughout its lifespan.

This radar system will provide Sweden with robust surveillance capabilities, enabling the country to address emerging challenges in the evolving air and space domains.

The agreement between FMV and Thales marks a step forward in strengthening Sweden’s defence capabilities. The SMART-L MM/F radars will play a role in maintaining airspace sovereignty, ensuring a comprehensive RAP, and enhancing the overall security and situational awareness of the Swedish Armed Forces.

Tristan Sauer, an aerospace, defence, and security analyst at GlobalData, provided his commentary on the deal: “The purchase of Thales’ SMART-L radars by the FMV reflects the nation’s commitment to contributing to the NATO air and missile defence network upon eventual accession.

The growing belligerence of the Russian state and the uniquely indiscriminate nature of their strategic bombing campaign in Ukraine has raised concerns about air defence capabilities within the Swedish government.”

Thales recorded a 9.4% growth in sales in Q1 2023. The French-based defence and security company attributed this growth to strong dynamics and mature markets in different regions, especially Europe and North America.