F-35 sensors used in military exercise

Feb. 7, 2012 at 1:23 PM
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LINTHICUM, Md., Feb. 7 (UPI) -- Electronic sensors that will be used on F-35 aircraft have been deployed in a major U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps amphibious exercise.

Northrop Grumman said the AN/AAQ-37 active electronically scanned array radar and AN/AAQ-37 infrared distributed aperture system were fitted on its BAC1-11 test aircraft for Bold Alligator 2012 to provide F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter sensor capability in air-to-air and air-to-ground reconnaissance missions for participating forces.

"With JSF being delivered to training commands in 2012, the Navy-Marine Corps team is poised to start using our radar and DAS in an operational context, much like U.S. Pacific Command did during Northern Edge 2011," said Jeff Leavitt, Northrop Grumman's vice president of Combat Avionics Systems.

"Northrop Grumman's commitment to deliver new capabilities to the war fighter remains a priority. This exercise is another opportunity to demonstrate operational utility to the fleet. F-35 sensor capabilities are unprecedented. Their performance continues to meet or exceed expectations."

The AN/APG-81 AESA radar features a full range of air-to-air and air-to-surface functions complemented by significant electronic warfare and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities, Northrop said, while the AN/AAQ-37 provides passive spherical awareness for the F-35 as well as simultaneously detecting and tracking aircraft and missiles.

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