Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Chennai: Radars to secure TN’s coastline

Pics-D Sampath Kumar/ Exp
By G Saravanan
Published in The New Indian Express, Chennai on December 20, 2011:
CHENNAI: The Indian Coast Guard (Eastern region), which has been entrusted to maintain radars (to be fixed by Bharat Electronics Ltd) atop selected lighthouses along the state’s coastline to improve security and continued surveillance of maritime domain, has begun the installation work on Monday.
Of the seven lighthouses selected along the state’s 900-odd km coastline, the Marina Beach lighthouse, opposite the DGP’s office, was the first one, where BEL officials fixed the radar.
According to Coast Guard sources, such radars would be fixed atop seven lighthouses, selected on the security importance and other coastal parameters.
The process would be completed within a year in a phased manner.
Sources also told Express that the radar sensor would be able to detect objects at a distance of around 15 to 20 nautical miles.
Apart from keeping an eye on big vessels, it will also help identify and detect small dinghies and boats sailing in the sea or even if they are stationary. Chennai would become the regional hub for the radars, sources said.
The radar would help the Coast Guard track any suspicious movement with swift neutralising action. Besides, the information collected would also be shared with other state and Central agencies.
Once the Coastal Security Network System is in place, it will surely boost our real time maritime domain awareness, sources added.

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