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  • Global Military Communications

Thales reinforces support to Estonia for airspace sovereignty

  • As part of the Medium Range Radar 2023 project (MRR 2023), the Estonian Center for Defence Investment (ECDI) contracts Thales to supply 2 Ground Master 400 Alpha (GM400α) radars, complementing airspace protection offered by the previous generation’s GM400 delivered with the MRR2010 project.

  • A game changer for air surveillance - the GM400α, a 3D radar, provides one of the highest performance on the market. With its full digital architecture, it tracks air threats at a range of up to 515 km, with superior low altitude detection, including slow moving UAV’s.

  • Renown for outstanding reliability, unmatched performance and high mobility, the GM400α plays a critical role in air surveillance worldwide.


At Paris Air Show, France, the Estonian Center for Defence Investment (ECDI) contracted 2 Ground Master 400 Alpha radars for the Estonian Air Force to reinforce the country’s airspace. Estonia was one of the first countries to procure the GM400 since its launch in 2008.


Given the multitude of threats and conflicts in constant evolution, building a reliable, accurate, up-to-date Recognized Air Picture (RAP) is becoming a challenge. To maintain airspace sovereignty, Forces need to rely on assets that provide superior situational awareness at all times.


The resurgence in geostrategic confrontations has significantly increased demand for airspace protection solutions. In addition to conventional aircraft and missiles, unmanned air vehicles (UAVs) now also constitute a threat to airspace sovereignty. Easy-to-deploy Ground Master (GM) radars have become highly survivable assets for detecting all kinds of threats at long range and at low altitude.

Leveraging on years of successful field experience, GaN technology and a digital architecture, the new GM400 Alpha provides 5 times more processing power, an increase in instrumented range of 10% (515km) and is ready for advanced artificial intelligence capabilities.


Estonia is historically a long-standing user of the GM400 radar since its first acquisition of 2 GM400 in 2009 for MRR2010 and mid-life upgrades in 2022. This new contract demonstrates the Estonian Center for Defence Investments (ECDI) satisfaction with Thales radar solutions. In particular, the mobility of GM400 Alpha, rather unique for a radar of this class, is well tuned for operational survivability.


Designed to offer unprecedented mobility, GM400 Alpha fits into a compact 20ft container with built-in lifting systems, and offer excellent redeployment times.


More than 200 Ground Master radars have been sold around the world, proof that this radar family is widely recognized for its high reliability and unparalleled performance.


We highly value the long-term collaboration with Thales," said Priit Soosaar, Strategic Category Manager (C4I, Cyber & Radars) at the Estonian Centre for Defence Investments."In the current market situation, we found this to be an economically advantageous solution with timely deliveries, ensuring a high-quality air picture on NATO's eastern flank."


“Estonia is a historical client for Thales ordering the first GM400 at its launch back in 2008 and we are proud to continue to support the Estonian Air Force in its mission of air sovereignty. This contract demonstrates Estonia’s satisfaction with the GM400 and mid-life upgrade of the original 2 radars, and shows Estonia’s trust in the radar for air surveillance. Today Thales is supporting 27 nations around the world and the Ground Master radar family is a reliable and combat-proven partner for air surveillance”, Christophe Salomon, Executive Vice President, Thales Land and Air Systems.

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