Integrated NATO Air Defense System

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Integrated NATO Air Defense System or INADS was the NATO response to the Russian development of long range bombers in the 1950s. The need to maintain a credible deterrence when early warning and intercept times were massively reduced led to the development of an improved air defense (AD) system.

Development was approved by the NATO Military Committee in December 1955. The system was to be based on four air defense regions (ADRs) coordinated by SACEUR (Supreme Allied Commander Europe). Starting from 1956 early warning coverage was extended across Western Europe using eighteen radar stations. This part of the system was completed by 1962. Linked to existing national radar sites the coordinated system was called the NATO Air Defense Ground Environment (NADGE). By 1972 NADGE consisted of 84 radar stations and associated control and reporting centers (CRC). The current system is Air Command and Control System (ACCS).

From 1960 NATO countries agreed to place all their air defense forces under the command of SACEUR in the event of war. These forces included command and control systems, radar installations, and Surface-to-Air (SAM) missile units as well as interceptor fighters.

After acquisition of radar return, a correlator program compares target characteristics to IFF, voice identification and pre-filled flight plans in deciding on the appropriate defense response if identified as unfriendly.[1]

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