BETHPAGE, N.Y., May 27, 2008 (PRIME NEWSWIRE) -- A Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC) study conducted for the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Dayton, Ohio, demonstrates that airborne electronic jammer aircraft are more effective and efficient when networked and enhanced by decision aids. Airborne electronic attack, or "jamming," aircraft can blind, disrupt or otherwise affect enemy radars, communications, computing and other electronic weapons and systems, protecting warfighters during combat.
The study aimed to determine the effectiveness of networked jammers when they are supported by specialized computer programs that recognize enemy radars, communications and other electronic activities. The computer programs determine the threat and then automatically assign responses. The study determined the effectiveness and efficiency of these decision aids to improve both the ability of strike aircraft to hit their targets and the overall safety of their crews.
Researchers at Northrop Grumman's Bethpage facility initially demonstrated that networking airborne electronic jammers provide warfighters more tactical options and flexibility than independently functioning electronic attack aircraft. Then, by adding decision aids to the jammers, these systems were measured to be three to five times more effective than standalone jammers.
"We believe that our findings validate, through sound science, that the military's roadmap for airborne electronic attack is solid and sensible," said Patricia McMahon, vice president of Electronic Support and Attack Solutions for Northrop Grumman. "Optimized networks let battle managers see more of the battlefield and see it with more surety and clarity."
Researchers at Northrop Grumman applied an in-house technology called the AEA Mission Management Processing (AMMP) decision making module to optimize networked jammers for the study's simulations. AMMP utilizes intelligent agent technology with mission-specified rule sets to automate the responses of the various AEA systems in the network. These mission rules let the network assess the electronic battle space, prioritize the responses needed, assign specific tasks to the jammers and make real-time adjustments as the battle progresses.
AMMP was developed as part of Northrop Grumman's larger Electronic Warfare Battle Management initiatives. The company has been producing airborne electronic attack aircraft and systems for half a century.
"It was the relatively recent incorporation of communication systems such as the Link-16/Multifuntion Information Distribution System into the military's electronic warfare fleet that opened the door to capabilities that we evaluated in our study," said McMahon. "That allows us to incorporate tools such as AMMP, which relieve the operators from trying to make 'speed-of-light' tactical adjustments and let them focus on managing the battle."
Northrop Grumman Corporation is a global defense and technology company whose 120,000 employees provide innovative systems, products, and solutions in information and services, electronics, aerospace and shipbuilding to government and commercial customers worldwide.
CONTACT: John A. Vosilla Northrop Grumman Integrated Systems (516) 575-5119 John.Vosilla@ngc.com