Swathi Mk2 WLR integration strengthens Indian Army's mountain surveillance capabilities


On August 5, 2023, the Indian Army announced the integration of the Swathi Mk2 WLR radar, a lighter and more compact version than its predecessor, the Swathi Mk1, augmenting its mountain surveillance capabilities amidst a backdrop of constant tensions with China.
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Swathi Mk2 WLR is an advanced electronically scanned phased array radar, specifically designed for operations in mountainous and high-altitude areas. (Picture source: @DefenceDecode Twitter)


Developed by Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) in Bengaluru, the Swathi Mk2 WLR is an advanced electronically scanned phased array radar, specifically designed for operations in mountainous and high-altitude areas. This technology relies on advanced signal processing techniques to automatically detect and track enemy artillery fire, including cannons, mortars, and rocket launchers. Additionally, it can track friendly fire trajectories, facilitating artillery adjustments for greater accuracy. The Swathi Mk2's key advantage lies in its ability to detect and track small projectiles on the battlefield, factoring in environmental conditions to accurately estimate launch and impact points.

This radar stands out for its high mobility and swift deployment, allowing it to effectively adapt to changing operational requirements. Its slewable platform adds extra agility, enabling scans of various areas without physical repositioning. Moreover, it is designed to withstand harsh conditions and electronic warfare measures, ensuring its survival on the field. By providing critical information about enemy weapon systems, the Swathi Mk2 WLR acts as a force multiplier for friendly forces.

In addition to its capabilities in detecting and tracking enemy artillery fire, the Swathi Mk2 can detect 81mm or larger mortars at distances ranging from 4 to 20 km, 105mm or larger cannons at distances from 6 to 30 km, and flying rockets at distances from 6 to 40 km. These technical features contribute to its versatility and capacity to provide vital strategic information for swift and accurate countermeasures.

This addition to the Indian Army's arsenal comes amidst a tense geopolitical backdrop marked by tensions between China and India. Both countries have experienced border disputes and confrontations along their contested frontiers, particularly in the Himalayan region. The integration of the Swathi Mk2 enhances India's position in mountain surveillance and defense, where challenging altitudes and complex topography pose considerable military operational difficulties.