Northrop Grumman plans to offer foreign upgrade customers a new radar based on the Lockheed Martin F-35 Joint Strike Fighter’s APG-81 active electronically scanned array combined with Scalable Agile Beam Radar receiver, exciter and processors (REP), reported Dave Majumdar for Flighglobal.com on Tuesday.
Patrick Antkowiak, vice president of the company’s advanced concepts and technologies division, said Northrop placed the new radar on the British Aircraft Corporation 111 test-bed aircraft and flew it on May 9th.
The new system would have the power and performance of the APG-81, but at a much lower cost.
Joe Ensor, vice president of Northrop’s intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance and targeting systems, said the AESA radar’s processing is performed in the JSF’s core processors.
US F-15s and F/A-18s are being upgraded with Raytheon-built AESA radar, so Northrop’s radar will most likely be exported for use in the Boeing F-15, F/A-18 or Lockheed F-16. Antkowiak added that other foreign and domestic customers can also order the new radar.
Ensor said since the APG-81 antenna is already cleared for export, it should not be difficult to get the new radar cleared for sale to foreign allies.