L3Harris' sandwich radomes are rigid, self-supporting structures designed to provide outstanding electromagnetic performance for specific frequency bands.
Sandwich radome applications are reserved for sophisticated 3D air surveillance radar for military and commercial SATCOM and civilian air traffic control applications.
Other applications include weather radar, phased-array radar and secondary surveillance radar.
Standard wind speed design is 150 mph (240 kph); optional designs of up to 250 mph (400 kph) are available.
L3Harris' sandwich radomes are constructed of doubly-curved polygonal panels that are bolted together from inside the radome to form a truncated sphere.
Individual panels can be either four-sided or polygonal, depending on electromagnetic requirements. Panel connections are designed to provide structural continuity and weather tightness while minimizing transmission loss.
The sandwich shell is constructed using highly developed composite materials (i.e., sophisticated cloth weaves, resins and foams) to optimize panel consistency and strength. We exclusively use pre-impregnated (prepreg) materials for the surface skins to control both skin thickness and resin content. Unlike a “wet layup” process” used by most people in the industry, the use of prepreg allows us to provide improved weight to strength ratios in our laminate leading to a higher quality product, with more even resin content. Prepreg provides significantly better fatigue resistance with less void content in the laminate, and better fiber alignment resulting in greater structural strength. It also allows us to control laminate thickness, with very low thermal expansion, which is crucial to obtaining specified electromagnetic performance.
Each panel core—which most commonly consists of polyurethane foam for larger radomes or honeycomb for smaller radomes—is fully enclosed by the surface skins to make the panel weather-tight. Both A-type (three-layer) and C-type (five-layer) construction is available. By varying the skin and core thickness, it provides for optimum performance at the desired operating frequencies.
The panels include reinforced panel edges tuned (impedance-matched) to the specific operating frequency that when assembled, form an overlapping joint with connecting fasteners acting in shear. The outside overlap flange design allows for panel assembly to take place inside the radome and easy panel removal for replacement or repair.
- Easy to install
- Hydrophobic coatings for enhanced high-frequency performance in rain
- Customized shapes for reduced tower loads or radar cross-section (RCS)