1206 Radars Upgraded

A Spexer 2000 radar used for coastal surveillance. This was the CSS installed in ESSCOM AOR in 2016 and dismantled and decommissioned in 2022.

SHAH ALAM: Back in 2006, the US gifted Malaysia an unknown number and type of coastal surveillance radars which were known colloquially as the 1206 radars. Some 17 years later the 1206 CSS radars have been upgraded which was also paid by the US.

The 1206 radars were installed at eight locations of the eastern coast of Sabah which now comes under the ESSCOM AOR. Not much details can be gleaned from the release below by Joint Force Command apart from the upgrading and installation of new sites for coastal surveillance system have been concluded.

It must be noted that from original story back in 2007, the US only gave four radar for four sites. Which means that the US has donated another four extra radars to Malaysia since then. It was supposed to be nine a report in 2008, stated.

TSI Coastal Surveillance Radar which is likely the 1206 CSS radar.

A US firm, Forward Slope Incorporated work together with the local firm contracted to do the upkeep and maintenance of the eight radar sites, System Consultancy Services Sdn Bhd,for the upgrading work.

A check on Forward Slope website revealed that the upgrading work may well involved in installing a new border and coastal surveillance system. The release from Joint Force Command:

Participants of the meeting posed for a group photograph. ATB 2

πŒπ„π’π˜π”π€π‘π€π“ πŽπ”π“ππ‘πˆπ„π… ππ€πˆπŠ 𝐓𝐀𝐑𝐀𝐅 𝐑𝐀𝐃𝐀𝐑 𝐂𝐒𝐒 πŸπŸπŸŽπŸ”
TAWAU, 16 Ogos 23 – Markas Angkatan Tugas Bersama 2 (MK ATB 2) melaksanakan satu Mesyuarat Outbrief Naik Taraf Radar Coastal Surveillance System (CSS) 1206 secara fizikal dan atas talian bertempat di Bilik Gerakan AKBA, MK ATB 2, hari ini.
Mesyuarat tersebut telah dipengerusikan oleh Komander ATB 2, Brig Jen Wan Edenin bin Wan Mahsin dan dihadiri oleh wakil dari kerajaan Amerika Syarikat PMW 740 dan kontraktor yang dilantik iaitu Forward Slope Inc dari Amerika Syarikat serta wakil dari Syarikat System Consultancy Services Sdn Bhd selaku kontraktor tempatan yang bertugas sebagai konsultan dan system maintenance. Bagi pihak Angkatan Tentera Malaysia (ATM) pula wakil dari Mk ATM, Markas Angkatan Bersama (Mk AB) dan Mk ATB 2. Di samping itu wakil dari BDPS KEMENTAH turut hadir bagi membincangkan hasil dari pemasangan naik taraf radar baharu fasa 3 yang telah dilaksanakan pada 4 hingga 15 Sep 23 di CSS Dogoton dan CSS Limau-Limau.
Mesyuarat ini bertujuan membentangkan hasil dari naik taraf radar bagi ketiga-tiga fasa, membincangkan cabaran-cabaran yang dihadapi serta penyelesaian terhadap perkara-perkara yang berkaitan semasa naik taraf radar. Majlis menandatangani dokumen pengesahan selesai tugas naik taraf radar telah ditandatangani oleh wakil Mk ATB2 selaku pengguna dan wakil PMW 740. Tamatnya mesyuarat ini turut menandakan tamatnya penugasan naik taraf radar bagi ke lapan-lapan CSS seperti yang telah dirancang sebelum ini.

It is interesting to note that the coastal surveillance system procured by the Defence Ministry on 2015/2016 the Hensoldt Spexer CSS has been retired last year. It was in service for only seven years.

A Spexer 2000 radar keeping watch over a coastal area. Airbus

Industry sources told Malaysian Defence that the Spexer CSS system had to be retired as it was not the right tool for the job. Coupled with the high-cost of maintenance, the decision to retire the system was correct, they added.

— Malaysian Defence

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About Marhalim Abas 2227 Articles
Shah Alam


  1. Weird…Hensoldt claims low cost ownership

    Main Benefits

    Increased probability of small target detection
    low cost of ownershion
    Highly reliability
    Effective in poor weather conditions
    360Β° coverage

  2. The Spexer 2000 radar is basically a non-rotating AESA radar panel. It just have 120 degrees of observation area, unlike 360 degrees of a rotating antenna radar.

    If you want a 360 degrees coverage, you need to put 3x spexer 2000 radars in a triangle shape.

    It could be repurposed for counter-UAV detection, counter-artillery detection or even battlefield surveillance.

    On the other hand “wakil kerajaan Amerika Syarikat PMW 740” full name is PMW 740 International C4I Integration Program Office, which is a part of the U.S. Navy’s Maritime Domain Awareness program.

    U.S. Navy Maritime Domain Awareness program is designed to provide the host countries border control and US Navy key information such as a vessel’s name, course, speed, destination, cargo, national registry and many other pertinent data fields using the CSS system as well as the real-time Automatic Identification system so that they can make decisions on border monitoring and coastal security.

    This system has been installed in many countries around the world, paid for by US Navy. Indonesia for example has 18 CSS locations paid for by US Navy.

  3. I did not say it was bad, just not the right equipment for the job. And what is the point of maintaining something if it’s not suitable for the job. So, if they could find the right mission for the radars and it does the job, then it may be worthwhile to maintain them. It could be cheaper than buying new ones.

  4. A pity the Spexers werent suitable for the role envisioned but I think they arent useless, right?
    So why not reassign them to other areas more suited or give them away to other bodies that might have better use, like MMEA or something?

  5. Another way is to repurpose Furuno marine radar and put it on top of a mast ala what the Philippines coast guard is doing for its island outposts thus in effect they have a chain of “coastal radar” along its many isles

    It isn’t as capable and require more manpower to maintain vigilance but they do work sufficiently enough.

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