Northrop Grumman Receives $56.2 Million Contract to Expand Targeting Capabilities for Joint STARS
MELBOURNE, Fla., Jan. 15, 2007 (PRIME NEWSWIRE) — Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC) has received a $56.2 million contract from the U.S. Air Force to provide an Enhanced Land/Maritime Mode (ELMM) mobile target precision tracking and engagement capability for the E-8C Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System (Joint STARS) aircraft fleet. This contract is an outgrowth of the successful DARPA Affordable Moving Surface Target Engagement (AMSTE) program demonstrated in recent exercises and includes an Advanced Radar Mode (ARM) upgrade to the Joint STARS sensor.
The E-8C Joint STARS is the world’s most advanced wide-area airborne ground-surveillance, targeting and battle-management system. It detects, locates, classifies, tracks and targets hostile ground movements, communicating real-time information through secure data links with joint and component command and control elements.
“The ELMM/AMSTE/ARM upgrade is a significant operational enhancement that will improve overall battlefield response and tactical decision-making,” said Dave Nagy, vice president of Northrop Grumman’s Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance programs. “We’ve successfully demonstrated this targeting capability for the service’s global positioning system (GPS)-guided Joint Direct Attack Munitions (JDAM) during live drops at the Eglin and China Lake ranges in 2003 and during the Resultant Fury demonstration in the Pacific in 2004. Now this capability is being installed throughout the whole Joint STARS fleet.”
The ARM upgrade will provide a Swath Synthetic Aperture Radar (Swath SAR) mode and provide an Enhanced SAR mode in a new processing architecture that provides additional growth for future enhancements. It also provides additional capability to disseminate high resolution imagery from the Joint STARS radar to ground commanders.
“Joint STARS’ inherent capabilities to perform both wide area maritime surveillance and precision tracking of mobile surface targets enabled us to engage both small and large targets with available assets,” said Nagy. “By bringing together networked sensors, command and control elements and weapons in real time, we can successfully and effectively deny an enemy ‘sanctuary of movement’ on land and at sea.”
All Joint STARS aircraft are assigned to the Georgia Air National Guard’s 116th Air Control Wing, a “total-force blended wing,” based at Robins Air Force Base, Warner Robins, Ga. The wing comprises active-duty Air Force, Army and Air National Guard personnel.