BALTIMORE, July 17, 2001 (PRIMEZONE) -- Northrop Grumman Corporation's (NYSE:NOC) Electronic Sensors and Systems Sector (ES3) has announced the delivery of two Tactical Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Radars (TUAVR) and spares to the U.S. Army's Communications and Electronics Command's (CECOM) Intelligence and Information Warfare Directorate, following the completion of formal government acceptance testing.
The lightweight, low-cost TUAVR, which is being developed by Northrop Grumman for the Army as part of an Advanced Technology Demonstration Program sponsored by CECOM, will provide battlefield commanders with an affordable all-weather, day or night source of reconnaissance information.
Formal demonstrations for Army officials of the TUAVR in an operational combat scenario are scheduled for late July at Fort Huachuca, Ariz., on board the Hunter, a surrogate UAV. These flight tests are intended to validate the capabilities of the Northrop Grumman radar and to develop concepts of operations.
Preliminary flight tests of the TUAVR on the Hunter UAV took place in mid-March at Fort Huachuca and lasted a total of 2.7 hours over several days. For these tests, the radar was integrated with L-3 Communications' tactical common data link, which enables the transmission of digital information from the radar.
"Initial flight test results have been extremely gratifying, with the UAV sensor generating both high-quality synthetic aperture radar (SAR) and moving target indication (MTI) imagery," said Richard A. Rash, TUAVR program manager at Northrop Grumman ES3.
The TUAVR is ultimately designed for the Army's Shadow 200 UAV, which is being developed by AAI Corporation. The first flight tests of the TUAVR occurred in November 2000 on board Northrop Grumman's Islander test bed aircraft from the company's facilities in Baltimore. The Northrop Grumman TUAVR features high-resolution SAR strip and spot map modes, plus MTI capabilities. The radar is contained in a single chassis weighing just 63.5 lbs. within a volume of only 1.3 cubic ft. In its production configuration, the radar will weigh only 57 lbs. and occupy only one cubic ft. of payload space.
"The TUAVR will provide the Army with its first all-weather, day or night source of battlefield information organic to the brigade level," added Mr. Rash. "TUAVR's target location accuracy will enable beyond 'line of sight' all-weather precision targeting."
The TUAVR is derived from the proven 165 lb. Northrop Grumman AN/ZPQ-1 tactical endurance synthetic aperture radar (TESAR), which is currently in production as the day/night, all-weather sensor for the U.S. Air Force's Predator UAV. TESAR provides continuous imagery for the Predator's 40-hour mission over all terrain types and in adverse weather. TESAR was first deployed in a peacekeeping mission in Bosnia in 1996 and continues to be deployed with the Air Force in Bosnia, Kosovo and other locations.
Headquartered in Baltimore, Md., ES3 is a world leader in the design, development and manufacture of defense electronics systems including airborne radar systems, navigation systems, electronic warfare systems, precision weapons, airspace management systems, air defense systems, communications systems, space systems, marine systems, oceanic and naval systems, logistics systems, and automation and information systems.
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