An airborne early warning and control system is a military surveillance system carried by an aircraft. It is an airborne radar system designed to track aircrafts from a great distance. It is often abbreviated as AEW&C. It is used for defensive and offensive air operations. The system is used at a high altitude. The radars help operators to differentiate between friendly and hostile aircraft hundreds of miles away. This helps them in taking defensive steps. The system may also be used to direct fighters to their target locations.
AEW&C is also known as ‘airborne early warning’ (AEW) and ‘airborne warning and control system.’