(DEFENSE SECURITY ASIA, 2 Jan 2022)-The Ministry of Defence will acquire a new long-range air defense radar to replace the existing radar in Bukit Lunchu, Plentong in Johor to monitor the country’s airspace in the south from all intrusions and other elements that threaten the country’s security.
According to Deputy Defence Minister Datuk Seri Ikmal Hisham Abdul Aziz who touched on the matter in the Dewan Rakyat recently, the long-range air defence radar that will be stationed in Johor will be obtained in the first quarter of next year.
The procurement of the long-range radar will be done through an international open tender. The long-range air defence radar in Bukit Lunchu, Plentong is used to monitor the airspace in the southern part of Malaysia and its surrounding areas.
Earlier, the Chief of Air Force, General Tan Sri Ackbal Abdul Samad, had said that the RMAF was in the process of procuring air defece radars to ensure the safety of the country’s airspace.
The replacement of the long-range air defence radar in the south of the country is very appropriate because as we know, there are a lot of “air movement” in the southern part of the country.
Many air bases of neighboring countries are also located south of Malaysia which requires continuous monitoring by the RMAF using the long-range air defence radar.
These neighbouring country-owned air bases are important air bases and they need monitoring.
Apart from Tengah Air Base and Paya Lebar Air Base owned by the Republic of Singapore Air Force, Indonesia also has the Hang Nadim Air Base on Batam Island, near Johor, which houses air assets that have the potential to carry out various missions.
DEFENSE SECURITY ASIA Admin is sure that many “suspicious flights” whether using aircraft or unmanned aircraft occur in the south of the country that requires us to always be in a state of readiness.
News of these “suspicious flight” will not be reported by the mainstream media (which requires official sources to be quoted).
Anyone who lives either in Gelang Patah, Pasir Gudang or even in Pengerang in Johor can testify that “air activities” in neighboring countries are very active, especially when there are training for their National Service deployment.
Prior to this, in the middle of the year, the Ministry of Defence has already issued a tender for the procurement of a long-range radar and the country will also receive a long-range air defence radar contributed by the United States to be stationed in Labuan for airspace surveillance in the South China Sea.
According to the Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) portal, the Bukit Lunchu RMAF 323 Squadron came into effect on 15 July 1999 to monitor the southern airspace of Peninsular Malaysia.
Squadron 323 RMAF Bukit Lunchu is responsible for monitoring the airspace in the southern part of Peninsular Malaysia by collecting information obtained through radar. The information will be channeled to No. 1 Air Division Headquarters for interception mission instructions or other instructions.
In the context of the National Air Defence System (NADS) during the war, Sqn 323 RMAF Bukit Lunchu will contact fighter jet squadrons in Kuantan and Butterworth for interception missions when its radar detects the advance of enemy aircraft.
The radar in this squadron is of the mobile type and can be moved and placed in other areas when directed.
Previously, the airspace in the southern part of the Peninsula was not monitored by any military radar except for limited coverage by the civil radar of the Department of Civil Aviation Malaysia (JPAM) in Senai.
This situation makes the airspace in the south of the Peninsula vulnerable to the risk of invasion by foreign aircraft.
The squadron is equipped with the NADS which requires integration between radar units, bases and combat units.
The establishment of Sqn 323 is also in line with the needs of the RMAF.
New Long-range Air Defence Radar To “Monitor” Southern Malaysia is written by P. Waran for mymilitarytimes.com