Sentinel R1 (ASTOR)
RETAINING UNPARALLELED SITUATIONAL AWARENESS
Sentinel’s onboard Airborne Stand-Off Radar (ASTOR) reconnaissance system delivers accurate target information and speeds decision-making.
The Sentinel R Mk 1 fleet is a key C4ISTAR asset for the UK’s armed forces. Operated by the Royal Air Force’s No5 Army Cooperation Sqn, the Airborne Stand-off Radar (ASTOR) system incorporates the Sentinel and ground components with the aircraft’s powerful active electronically-scanned array (AESA) ‘dual mode’ surveillance radar, combining the best in ground moving target indicator (GMTI) and synthetic aperture radar (SAR) imagery, for unparalleled situational awareness.
The imagery is passed by secure data links to ground stations at all levels of command and control. By operating at high altitude, and at considerable long range stand-off distances, the radar platform is able to remain over safe territory while providing an excellent “look-down” angle of the target area.
The fleet of five special mission aircraft house an innovative airborne mission management system that provides troops with continuous 24-hour wide area, all weather, air-to-ground surveillance capabilities by scanning areas from a safe ‘stand-off-distance’, safeguarding coalition forces by delivering actionable, accurate, information. The platform is a recognised force multiplier that enables commanders to direct the most effective utilisation of the assets at their disposal.
Based on a Global Express business jet manufactured by Bombardier and modified by Raytheon UK, the Sentinel R1 aircraft was originally intended for conventional war-fighting operations, to track armoured formations and conduct strategic reconnaissance tasks. The capability, however, has proven to be flexible in adapting to humanitarian crisis roles, such as mapping and scaling the flood crisis that hit Southern England in early 2014.
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