Northrop Grumman Corporation has received a $3.6 billion Indefinite Delivery, Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) award for Large Aircraft Infrared Countermeasure (LAIRCM) systems and support from the U.S. Air Force. Under the IDIQ, the Air Force may issue task or delivery order awards up to the ceiling amount specified in the contract. Work under the contract is set to conclude in 2025. The initial task order is $2.4 million for logistics support services.
Northrop Grumman’s LAIRCM system protects aircrews by detecting, tracking and jamming incoming infrared threats without the need for user intervention.
«This new IDIQ award extends Northrop Grumman’s multi-decade support of successful aircrew protection provided by our infrared countermeasure systems, and demonstrates our customer’s confidence in LAIRCM’s ability to address the rapidly changing threat environment», said Bob Gough, vice president, land and avionics Command, Control, Communications, Computer, Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (C4ISR) division, Northrop Grumman.
Northrop Grumman infrared countermeasures are enabling missions worldwide, having been installed on more than 1,800 aircraft of more than 80 types worldwide.
Northrop Grumman Corporation has received a $450 million, indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity contract award to deliver Joint Threat Emitter (JTE) systems to the United States Air Force. The JTE offers realistic warfighter training and provides a modern, reactive battlespace environment that trains military personnel to identify and counter enemy missile and artillery threats.
Awarded by the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, the JTE Enhanced Delivery Initiative contract includes threat emitter units, mobile and fixed command and control units as well as spares, support equipment, testing and training.
JTE is a robust and ruggedized system that is easily relocated, reactive to aircrew/aircraft for fast-jet, fixed-wing and rotary-wing defensive measures, and can be rapidly reprogrammed with new threat parameters.
«Our Joint Threat Emitter systems enable aircrews to train in environments that match actual combat situations. These training systems are critical in preparing members of the military to respond to threats», said Rob Fleming, vice president, land and avionics C4ISR, Northrop Grumman.
The JTE Enhanced Delivery Initiative includes foreign military sales to U.S. partner countries through the U.S. Air Force. All work under this contract will be performed in Buffalo.
Northrop Grumman’s JTE is the current U.S. Air Force program of record with 28 systems so far fielded both domestically and internationally.
Northrop Grumman is a leading global security company providing innovative systems, products and solutions in autonomous systems, cyber, Command, Control, Communications, Computer, Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (C4ISR), space, strike, and logistics and modernization to customers worldwide.
The U.S. Air Force has awarded Northrop Grumman Corporation a 12-month, $330 million contract for Total System Support Responsibility (TSSR) of the E-8C Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System (Joint STARS) fleet. The integrated total systems support contract covers TSSR Period Year 19, which began November 1, 2018 and concludes October 31, 2019.
Under the Joint STARS TSSR program, Northrop Grumman continues its longstanding partnership with the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center to provide total systems support to the 116th and 461st Air Control Wings for all facets of sustainment and support of the 16 aircraft Joint STARS fleet at Robins Air Force Base and forward operating locations overseas. Northrop Grumman will provide program management, engineering technical support, aircrew and maintenance training, supply chain and spares management, technical data and publications, program depot maintenance and overall customer support.
«The C2ISR division looks forward to the continued teaming with Northrop Grumman to improve critical aircraft availability to our combatant commanders while executing our Joint STARS 2030 roadmap», said Colonel David Menke, senior materiel leader, Command and Control Information Systems (C2ISR) division, digital directorate, Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, U.S. Air Force.
«While supporting the Joint STARS mission over the past 33 years, we have focused on keeping the high-demand E-8C fleet available and mission capable for the combatant commanders. Our commitment to the supported soldiers, sailors, Marines and airmen at the forward operating locations remains steadfast», said Jane Bishop, vice president, military aircraft surveillance programs, Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems.
«The 24/7 support we provide to our warfighters under TSSR coupled with the rapid fielding of new capabilities is an effective way to ensure mission success. We completed the Air Force Tactical Receive System-Ruggedized upgrade in just 12 months and are now implementing a fifth-generation upgrade to the fleet’s central computers», Bishop added. «The E-8C’s continue to serve as a low-risk pathfinder for the U.S. Air Force through continued fleet capability enhancements while the Air Force develops the follow-on advanced battle management system».
Joint STARS is the only platform in the U.S. arsenal that combines accurate wide-area moving target detection with synthetic aperture radar imagery to locate, classify and track surface targets in all weather conditions from standoff distances. The fleet has flown more than 130,000 combat mission hours in support of the U.S. Central Command since September 11, 2001.
Team JSTARS, consisting of the Georgia Air National Guard’s 116th Air Control Wing, the active-duty 461st Air Control Wing and Army JSTARS detachment, provides joint airborne command and control, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance support over land and water to combatant commanders around the globe. The total force integration unit operates the world’s only Joint STARS weapon system based out of Robins Air Force Base. In addition to work at Robins Air Force Base, TSSR is supported by employees and partners at the Northrop Grumman Manned Aircraft Design Center of Excellence in Melbourne, Florida, the Lake Charles Maintenance and Modification Center, in Lake Charles, Louisiana, and more than 30 major suppliers across the United States.
The U.S. Navy has awarded Northrop Grumman Corporation a $35.1 million, 20-month contract to demonstrate existing technologies for the low-band frequency jammer, the second increment of the Next Generation Jammer (NGJ) program.
Northrop Grumman has been the Navy’s airborne electronic attack integrator for more than 50 years. In addition to its work on NGJ Low Band (NGJ-LB), the company continues to support the fleet with advanced electronic attack capabilities.
The NGJ system will augment, and ultimately replace the EA-18G Growler aircraft’s aging ALQ-99 tactical jammer with advanced airborne electronic attack capabilities for defeating increasingly advanced and capable threats. Developed in three frequency-focused increments – high-band, mid-band and low-band – NGJ will be capable of jamming multiple radar signals at the same time, including surveillance and air-defense radars.
The Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) selected Northrop Grumman for the NGJ-LB Demonstration of Existing Technology phase. The contract was awarded October 25.
Northrop Grumman’s offer was selected based on technical merit and potential maturity for accomplishing the low-band mission. The company’s solution also provides rapid operational capability to the fleet.
«Northrop Grumman will deliver a mature, low-risk and exceedingly capable solution for Next Generation Jammer Low Band that outpaces evolving threats and enables the Navy’s speed-to-fleet path», said Thomas Jones, vice president and general manager, airborne Command, Control, Communications, Computer, Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (C4ISR) systems, Northrop Grumman.
«Our NGJ-LB pod provides multi-mission capability for electromagnetic maneuver warfare. We stand ready to demonstrate advancements in this mission area and deliver ahead of schedule».
Work primarily will be performed in Linthicum, Maryland, and Bethpage and Amityville, New York.
The U.S. Navy has awarded Northrop Grumman Corporation a $171 million contract for Lot 7 Full Rate Production (FRP) of the AGM-88E Advanced Anti-Radiation Guided Missile (AARGM). The contract will deliver advanced capability to U.S. warfighters as well as the Italian Air Force and Royal Australian Air Force to counter the accelerating proliferation of surface-to-air threats.
«The rapid proliferation of today’s threats require the most advanced solution to detect and defeat surface-to-air-threats and protect our nation and allies», said Cary Ralston, vice president and general manager, defense electronic systems, Northrop Grumman. «AARGM is an affordable, game-changing solution and we are proud to provide this capability to the warfighter».
AARGM is a supersonic, air-launched tactical missile system, upgrading legacy AGM-88 HARM systems with capability to perform destruction of enemy air defense missions. AARGM is the most advanced system for pilots, with in-cockpit, real-time electronic order of battle situational awareness against today’s modern surface-to-air threats. It is able to rapidly engage traditional and non-traditional advanced land- and sea-based air-defense threats, as well as striking, time-sensitive targets.
AARGM is a U.S. Navy and Italian Air Force international cooperative major acquisition program with the U.S. Navy as the executive agent. AARGM is currently deployed and supporting operational requirements for the U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps. The missile is integrated into the weapons systems on the FA-18C/D Hornet, FA-18E/F Super Hornet and EA-18G Growler aircraft. The Italian Air Force (ItAF) recently completed operational testing of AARGM on their Tornado Electronic Combat and Reconnaissance (ECR) aircraft. A series of flight tests culminated with direct hits on critical air defense threat targets, confirming the operational effectiveness and suitability of AARGM on the Italian Air Force Tornado and allowing the Italian Air Force to transition AARGM into operational squadrons.
Northrop Grumman Corporation teamed with the U.S. Army to develop the Common Infrared Countermeasure (CIRCM) system, and after undergoing a rigorous testing process to ensure system readiness for the demands of combat operations, the CIRCM system has achieved Milestone C. This critical milestone, awarded by the Department of Defense Milestone Decision Authority, marks the end of the development and testing phase and enables the beginning of production and deployment.
CIRCM is a lightweight system that uses laser energy to defend aircraft against advanced infrared missiles. It has a modular open systems architecture designed to evolve to defeat emerging infrared threats.
To achieve Milestone C, Northrop Grumman has worked closely with the Army to thoroughly test CIRCM. The system has undergone thousands of hours of laboratory, flight and free flight missile testing to verify its performance in a range of realistic combat scenarios. Throughout the process, CIRCM demonstrated its ability to protect aircrews by countering threats.
«With the achievement of Milestone C, we have collectively taken an important step toward getting this critical, life-saving technology to the warfighter», said Bob Gough, vice president, land and avionics Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (C4ISR) division, Northrop Grumman. «The CIRCM capability is mature, reliable and has proven to be mission-effective».
Northrop Grumman’s infrared countermeasures systems have been installed on more than 1,500 aircraft, representing more than 80 different aircraft types, including large and small fixed-wing, rotary wing and tilt-rotor platforms.
Northrop Grumman Corporation unveiled its «Vanguard» radar solution; a multi-function, open architecture system that can be easily scaled and applied to multiple missions and platforms.
«Our Vanguard solution redefines the way we produce radars and the capabilities possible within one flexible, scalable design», said Paul Kalafos, vice president, surveillance and electromagnetic maneuver warfare, Northrop Grumman. «Vanguard’s modular radar panels are a building block for a multitude of future radar aperture applications».
With its modular, panel-based structure, each radar panel represents a flexible building block that can be tailored to meet changing mission requirements. Each panel can act independently as its own radar, but can also be connected with the desired number of other radar panels to form one single, larger radar array. Each panel is also field replaceable, creating life-cycle cost savings and preventing long maintenance delays that prevent operation.
Large and small systems alike can use the same Vanguard radar building block, allowing for rapid, cost effective production and maximum system maturity.
Northrop Grumman has conducted more than 10 rigorous test flights and the Vanguard radar continues to exceed expectations and show exceptional stability, reliability and performance.
Crucial modes to the air-to-ground radar mission, including Ground Moving Target Indicator, Dismounted Moving Target Indicator, and Synthetic Aperture Radar mapping were executed successfully in Northrop Grumman’s first test flight of its solution in April 2017. Since that achievement, Vanguard has also shown the ability to rapidly adopt third party software and interface with the Open Mission Suite Battle Management Command and Control system.
Northrop Grumman Corporation recently began flight tests for MQ-8C Fire Scout aircraft produced in Moss Point at the Trent Lott International Airport, a major milestone for the company and the region’s aerospace economy.
Northrop Grumman’s Moss Point facility is key to producing and testing the MQ-8C Fire Scout, the U.S. Navy’s newest autonomous helicopter that is bringing increased speed, endurance and payload capacity to distributed maritime operations. The U.S. Navy recently completed initial operational test and evaluation aboard the USS Coronado (LCS-4) for the MQ-8C Fire Scout, which has over 1,500 program flight hours. The aircraft is a modified Bell 407 helicopter that is produced in Moss Point and supports quality manufacturing jobs in Mississippi.
«Building on Northrop Grumman’s recent announcement of new production capabilities in Moss Point and a 40 percent increase in employment at the site, the ability to now conduct MQ-8C Fire Scout flight tests where the production occurs will bring new efficiencies and effectiveness to our local operations and improve our ability to serve the U.S. Navy», said Melissa Packwood, program director, Fire Scout, Northrop Grumman.
In June, elected officials joined local employees to cut the ribbon on the new machine shop section that delivers important capabilities at Northrop Grumman’s Moss Point manufacturing center. For more than a decade, Gulf Coast employees have manufactured rotary and fixed wing autonomous systems in Moss Point that support the U.S. and its global allies. Recent facility upgrades have allowed for new work on manned aircraft to come to the site, diversifying the portfolio of work and bringing new jobs to the region.
In April 2004, Northrop Grumman broke ground in Moss Point with site construction beginning in 2005. In April 2006, Northrop Grumman contributed to aerospace industry growth in southern Mississippi when the ribbon was cut on the 101,000 square-foot facility. The company celebrated its 10-year anniversary at the site in 2016 and recently extended its lease adjacent to Trent Lott International Airport through 2026.
41.4 feet/12.6 m
7.8 feet/2.4 m
Blades Folded Hangar
7.8×34.7×10.9 feet/2.4×10.6×3.3 m
10.9 feet/3.3 m
35 feet/10.7 m
Gross Takeoff Weight
6,000 lbs./2,721.5 kg
Rolls-Royce M250-C47B with FADEC (Full Authority Digital Electronic Control)
140 knots/161 mph/259 km/h (maximum)
17,000 feet/5,182 m
Maximum Payload (Internal)
1,000 lbs./453.6 kg
600 lbs./272 kg (11 hrs. endurance)
Maximum Sling Load
2,650 lbs./1,202 kg
651 shp/485.45 kW
42.95 inch/1.09 m
24.81 inch/0.63 m
274 lbs./124.3 kg
1CF (centrifugal high-pressure)
2HP (two-stage high-pressure turbine), 2PT (two-stage power turbine)
Northrop Grumman Corporation has successfully completed the Critical Design Review (CDR) phase of the U.S. Navy’s WSN-12 Inertial Sensor Module and will begin production of ten pre-production units.
The WSN-12 is poised to become the primary shipboard inertial navigation system for most U.S. combatant vessels and will be installed on all vessels of the DDG, CG, CVN and SSN classes. The system brings new technology and improved accuracy to these platforms. The Inertial Sensor Module is a primary subsystem of the WSN-12, and includes the inertial sensors, electromechanical equipment supporting them and software to compute the navigation solution. The shipboard inertial navigation system measures, computes and distributes navigation data to all users, including attitude, velocity and position information.
«Northrop Grumman has met or exceeded objectives in all aspects of the sensor design and was able to demonstrate performance in the testing of the engineering development models», said Captain Jon Garcia, Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA) Integrated Warfare Systems 6.0 (IWS6.0). «We are looking forward to successful integration testing this year and receiving the sensor pre-production units next year».
«Completion of this CDR keeps this program on track to deliver exceptional navigation accuracy to the fleet», said Todd Leavitt, vice president, maritime systems, Northrop Grumman. «The WSN-12 Inertial Sensor Module provides technology that enables improvements to navigation accuracy and reliability, benefiting all systems that depend upon it».
Northrop Grumman is a leading global security company providing innovative systems, products and solutions in autonomous systems, cyber, Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (C4ISR), space, strike, and logistics and modernization to customers worldwide.
Northrop Grumman Corporation and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) have set a new standard for wireless transmission by operating a data link at 100 gigabits per second (Gbps) over a distance of 20 kilometers/12.4 miles in a city environment.
The two-way data link, which featured active pointing and tracking, was demonstrated January 19, 2018 in Los Angeles.
The blazing data rate is fast enough to download a 50 Gigabyte blue ray video in four seconds. The demonstration marked the successful completion of Northrop Grumman’s Phase 2 contract for DARPA’s 100 Gbps (100G) RF Backbone program.
The 100G system is capable of rate adaptation on a frame by frame basis from 9 Gbps to 102 Gbps to maximize data rate throughout dynamic channel variations. Extensive link characterization demonstrated short-term error-free performance from 9 to 91 Gbps, and a maximum data rate of 102 Gbps with 1 erroneous bit received per ten thousand bits transmitted.
The successful data link results from the integration of several key technologies. The link operates at millimeter wave frequencies (in this case, 71-76 gigahertz and 81-86 gigahertz) with 5 gigahertz of bandwidth, or data carrying capacity, and uses a bandwidth efficient signal modulation technique to transmit 25 Gbps data streams on each 5 gigahertz channel. To double the rate within the fixed bandwidth, the data link transmits dual orthogonally polarized signals from each antenna. Additionally, the link transmits from two antennas simultaneously (spatial multiplexing) and uses Multiple-Input-Multiple-Output (MIMO) signal processing techniques to separate the signals at two receiving antennas, thus again doubling the data rate within the fixed bandwidth.
According to Louis Christen, director, research and technology, Northrop Grumman, «This dramatic improvement in data transmission performance could significantly increase the volume of airborne sensor data that can be gathered and reduce the time needed to exploit sensor data».
«Next generation sensors such as hyperspectral imagers typically collect data faster, and in larger quantity than most air-to-ground data links can comfortably transmit», said Christen. «Without such a high data rate link data would need to be reviewed and analyzed after the aircraft lands».
By contrast, a 100G data link could transmit high-rate data directly from the aircraft to commanders on the ground in near real time, allowing them to respond more quickly to dynamic operations.
The successful 100G ground demonstration sets the stage for the flight test phase of the 100G RF Backbone program. This next phase, which started in June, demonstrates the 100G air-to-ground link up to 100 Gbps over a 100 km/62.1 miles range and extended ranges with lower data rates. The 100G hardware will be flown aboard the Proteus demonstration aircraft developed by Northrop Grumman subsidiary Scaled Composites.
Northrop Grumman’s 100G industry team includes Raytheon, which developed the millimeter wave antennas and related RF electronics and Silvus Technologies, which provides the key spatial multiplexing and MIMO signal processing technologies.