The Israeli defence ministry has blocked the potential export sale of Israel Aerospace Industries' EL/M-2052 active electronically scanned array radar to a number of countries, with its action having an immediate impact on the Indian market.
The restrictions were imposed following pressure from the US administration, which has outlined its concerns to Israel several times in the past two years.
Washington's position is driven by an assumption that exporting IAI's advanced radar would undermine the sale of US-made systems on the international stage, sources say.
At one stage, Saab had considered offering the EL/M-2052 as part of its Gripen NG proposal for the Indian air force's medium multi-role combat aircraft requirement, but instead opted for Selex Galileo's ES05 Raven AESA.
IAI had also viewed the Indian Aeronautical Development Agency's Tejas light combat aircraft as a potential candidate for the AESA radar. The modular design weighs 130-180kg (286-397lb) and consumes 4-10kVA, depending on the design configuration, and has built-in growth potential, the company says.
Developed by IAI's Elta Systems subsidiary, the EL/M-2052 uses an array of solid-state transmit/receive modules designed to dynamically shape the radiation pattern using an ultra-low side-lobe antenna. It can perform simultaneous multi-mode operations, detecting airborne threats and supporting navigation and mapping, by producing high-resolution synthetic aperture radar imagery.
The sensor can detect and track up to 64 airborne targets from long range, and enable a pilot to engage several simultaneously using air-to-air missiles, IAI says. The sensor can also provide long-range target detection, classification and tracking in the anti-ship role.