Northrop Grumman has successfully completed the first test to demonstrate real-time cueing of the Airborne Infrared sensor for the Ballistic Missile Defense System with the Integrated Sensor Manager.
ISM-a prototype capability Northrop Grumman is developing for the Missile Defense Agency to enable more accurate tracking and threat identification for intercepting a missile earlier in flight-received 2-D measurements received from space-based sensors observing the FTX-17 target during the test. After forming and providing 3-D tracks to MDA’s Experimentation Laboratory, or X-Lab, ISM sent a cue to the ABIR sensor at Vandenberg Air Force Base in Calif. and continued to provide cue updates as new measurement data was received.
ISM is being developed under an MDA Joint National Integration Center Research and Development Contract task order. Further experiments involving multiple airborne sensors and more complex scenarios will occur over the next two years.
“ABIR is a critical element for the PAA and our successful test shows we can command that sensor to generate actionable information to enable earlier intercept,” said Kelley Zelickson, vice president of air and missile defense systems for Northrop Grumman Information Systems. “It’s a significant achievement to execute the ISM’s first-time live cueing of an ABIR sensor to bring us closer to the desired Aegis launch-on-remote capability.”