On Guard, Far Away

Raytheon tech watches over remote islands, deep sea

High Frequency Surface Wave Radar

High Frequency Surface Wave Radar looks far over the horizon – more than 200 miles offshore – to monitor a country's Exclusive Economic Zone.

The world’s remote waterways and far-flung islands face a multitude of dangers. Pirates. Poachers. Terrorists. Unfriendly neighbors.

A host of Raytheon technology helps countries around the world protect their ports, fisheries, utilities and other key locations. Powerful coastal radars stare at the sea and spot ships over the horizon. A portable "security post in a box" live-streams intel from afar. Airborne radars pick out the periscopes of submarines. The company even builds security infrastructure from the ground up, as it did with the Philippines’ new National Coast Watch Center.

"Helping to make the world a safer place is work we take very seriously at Raytheon," said Todd Probert, a vice president in Raytheon's Intelligence, Information and Services business, which created the Philippines' maritime security post. "Our approach is based on a deep understanding of customer needs and our ability to tailor solutions with the best capabilities to meet their current and future security needs."

Protecting strategic sites like oil platforms, shipping lanes and islands is a little like defending warships and military installations – something Raytheon has been doing for decades.


At Raytheon Missile Systems in Tucson, Arizona, a team dedicated to strategic infrastructure protection develops products including Peregryn Protection Systems, a package of sensors and intruder deterrents custom-built to the size and type of terrain it protects.

Peregryn Protection System

The Peregryn Protection System, shown in this illustration, is a custom-built perimeter security station that can use bright lights, earsplitting noise and water cannons to drive away intruders.

A maritime version, for example, would watch over a restricted waterway. If an unknown vessel enters, the system would broadcast a warning and order the boat to turn around. Meanwhile, high-powered cameras would zoom in, helping the system's operators identify the threat.

If the vessel moves deeper into restricted waters, the response escalates, with the system alerting authorities and fending off the intruder with earsplitting alarms, disorienting light and water cannons.

Other Raytheon products designed to protect coastal and offshore areas include:

  • Smartblue Surveillance Container – A portable security post built inside a shipping container. The system provides early warning to prevent collisions at sea, and its cameras and sensors supply operators with vital information to respond to threats.
  • AN/APY-10 – The radar flies aboard the P-8 Poseidon aircraft and provides surveillance information on land, in shallow waters and at sea. Raytheon has already delivered 36 of 58 AN/APY-10 radars to the U.S. Navy, and the company is now under contract to produce 53 more for the Navy's P-8A fleet and the Royal Austrailan Air Force.
  • Sensors and analytics systems: Raytheon can outfit almost any plane or helicopter, drawing upon years of experience with Britain’s Sentinel jet and systems for the U-2 and Global Hawk surveillance aircraft.
  • SeaVue XMC – A radar that automatically detects and tracks thousands of maritime targets simultaneously, including small vessels that try to hide among traffic in congested coastal waters. SeaVue XMC is used by the United States Navy and Customs and Border Protection to guard nearly 90,000 miles of American coastline. 
  • Sensor packages such as Raytheon’s Multi-Spectral Targeting System. MTS turrets fly on more than 20 varieties of aircraft.
SmartBlue, a portable security station

This illustration shows SmartBlue, a portable security station built inside a shipping crate. SmartBlue has multiple tools to protect assets such as offshore oil rigs.

Raytheon also ties systems together to provide a comprehensive and layered approach to perimeter protection. The company designed, implemented and equipped the National Coast Watch Center in the Philippines. The center serves as a hub of information about the ships and vessels operating in or near local waters. It uses information from more than a dozen stations, sensors and coast guard ships. the U.S. Embassy in the Philippines said in a statement posted on the U.S. Pacific Command website.

"Maritime domain awareness is crucial for the Philippines as it increases its abilities to thwart smuggling, illegal fishing, (and) other criminal activities as well as improving defense capacity," the statement said.

The center is a major part of the support the U.S. Defense Threat Reduction Agency provides to the Philippines Maritime Agencies.

"The center's opening represents our commitment to providing critical services and solutions to help countries mitigate the risk of illicit weapons and materials crossing their sovereign borders," said Dave Wajsgras, president of Raytheon Intelligence, Information and Services business. "Raytheon's global mission operations team has extensive experience with successfully delivering similar solutions in the Middle East, Eastern Europe and Asia-Pacific regions."


Many strategic sites fall within a nation’s exclusive economic zone, a United Nations-recognized area that generally extends 230 miles (200 nautical miles, 370 kilometers) from the country’s territorial sea. Raytheon’s High-Frequency Surface Wave Radar is designed specifically to monitor surface activity in such zones.

The system, originally designed to protect Canadian fisheries, has also been deployed in other areas of North America as well as Asia and Europe. Its antennae – long poles that stick out of the ground – give it a deceptively simple appearance, but within lies technology that can track vessels over the curvature of the Earth. Traditional radars, by contrast, are limited to their line of sight.

“It’s 24-by-7 surveillance. It doesn’t care if it’s at night. It doesn’t care if it’s daytime. It’s on and looking,” said Brian A. Smith, vice president and general manager of Raytheon Canada Limited, which produces the radar system.

That around-the-clock, over-the-horizon intelligence is key to helping countries control their valuable offshore resources, said Greg Westfall, a marketing manager for Raytheon’s international radar programs.

“Being able to have surveillance eyes on areas you’re claiming as your own allows you to go out and patrol

Raytheon's Multi-Spectral Targeting System

Raytheon's Multi-Spectral Targeting System, seen on the belly of this surveillance plane, flies on more than 20 types of aircraft.

Published On: 08/27/2014
Last Updated: 12/08/2017