Sweden has yesterday opted for Raytheon's PATRIOT missile system amid growing Russia tensions. The Nordic country will buy the air defense missile system as it looks to boost its defences. Sweden’s Defence Materiel Administration (FMV), which handles military logistics, began negotiations over PATRIOT in November 2017 aiming to replace the current air defence system which is not able to engage ballistic missiles.
Other European coutnries also opted for Raytheon's best seller: The government of Romania signed an agreement to purchase seven PATRIOT Configuration 3+ units in November 2017, complete with radars, a control station, antennas, launching stations and power plants; while in the same month, the US State Department approved a U$10.5 billion sale of four PATRIOT missile defense systems to Poland.
Negotiations in Sweden were concluded in April and the government was expected to go ahead with the purchase. In March, the US state department has approved a possible U$3.2 billion FMS sale and in April (story here), the FMV said the initial deal would be worth around NOK10 billion ($1.13 billion), which could triple if Sweden uses an option to increase the number of missiles it purchases to a maximum of 300 (Sweden will buy four firing systems and two types of missiles as well as other equipment and training, the government said, with delivery completed before 2025).
Sweden requested four PATRIOT Configuration 3+ modernised fire units that include four AN/MPQ-65 radars; four control stations; nine antenna masts; 12 M903 launching stations; 100 Guidance Enhanced Missile TBM (GEM-T) missiles (Patriot Guidance Enhanced Missile Tactical Ballistic Missiles); and 200 Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) Missile Segment Enhancement (MSE) missiles from Lockheed Martin.
The MPQ-65 is a passive radar meaning it does not emit any signals, but instead collects signals edited from aircraft. This allows the radar to remain undetected as it tracks targets. The upgraded MPQ-65 radar can track up to 100 targets at once. The baseline features are enhanced to better counter developing threats like maneuverable ballistic missiles, stealth cruise missile, and aircraft. Using a C-band frequency (4-8GHz), the radar carries a range of over 100km and is also operated by using the MSP-104 ESC. The AN/MPQ-65 radar uses a second traveling wave tube (TWT) which allocates more search, detection, and tracking, capabilities than the older MPQ-53.