Tag Archives: Raytheon Intelligence & Space

50kW-class laser

Raytheon Intelligence & Space (RI&S), a Raytheon Technologies business, has been awarded a $123 million contract to build and deliver three additional combat-capable 50kW-class high-energy laser weapon systems as part of the U.S. Army’s Directed Energy Maneuver-Short Range Air Defense, or DE M-SHORAD, program. RI&S is a subcontractor in an Other Transaction Authority (OTA) agreement between the Army and Kord, a wholly owned subsidiary of KBR based in Huntsville, Alabama. The systems will be mounted on Stryker combat vehicles that the Army plans to deploy for field operations in 2022.

DE M-SHORAD
Raytheon Intelligence & Space to build mobile 50kW-class laser for U.S. Army

«The U.S. Army is leading the charge to give soldiers the first-ever operational capability of a mobile high-energy laser weapon», said Annabel Flores, vice president for Electronic Warfare Systems at RI&S. «Two years ago, the Army set a goal to deliver a powerful, maneuverable and proven laser system that was ready for operators to use in the field right away, and our team demonstrated that capability».

The award follows a U.S. Army DE M-SHORAD Combat Shoot-Off at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, this summer. RI&S’ solution was employed in a series of realistic scenarios designed to evaluate the performance of the system, establish threshold requirements for the laser and demonstrate its technical maturity and readiness. At the shoot-off, soldiers operated the system and effectively tracked, identified and engaged a variety of targets.

«In just a few days, soldiers went from training to operating the system and engaging targets to providing valuable feedback to our team that will help improve future systems», added Flores.

DE M-SHORAD will offer protection to maneuvering ground forces and equipment from threats such as Unmanned Aircraft Systems, or UAS, rotary-wing aircraft, and rockets, artillery and mortars.

RI&S’ weapons system for DE M-SHORAD combines a 50kW-class High-Energy Laser, a beam director, an Electro-Optical and InfraRed (EO/IR) target acquisition and tracking system, and a Ku720 multi-mission radar. This gives soldiers an effective counter-UAS solution as well as providing counterintelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities.

Work for DE M-SHORAD will be performed in McKinney, Texas.

Defensive laser weapon systems can complement kinetic weapons during field missions by providing a low cost per kill, speed-of-light delivery and a deep magazine limited only by vehicle fuel.

Previously, RI&S also delivered three high-energy laser systems to the U.S. Air Force. The systems have accrued more than 9,000 hours during operator training and operational assessment. Raytheon Technologies’ counter-UAS solutions include sensors, and kinetic and non-kinetic effectors that, when networked into a command-and-control system, provide layers of air defense and force protection designed to meet a variety of threats.

Prototype Sensor

Raytheon Intelligence & Space (RI&S), a Raytheon Technologies business, has received an award through an Other Transaction Agreement (OTA) with the Consortium Management Group, Inc., on behalf of the Consortium for Command, Control and Communications in Cyberspace (C5) to demonstrate, develop, build and integrate prototype sensors for the U.S. Army’s next generation airborne intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance system, called High-Accuracy Detection and Exploitation System, or HADES.

HADES
Raytheon Intelligence & Space to provide prototype sensor for U.S. Army’s HADES

«In future peer-to-peer conflicts, long-distance sensing from very high altitudes will be key to enabling our forces to achieve their objectives for long-range, precision fires», said Michael Fisher, vice president and general manager of Raytheon Applied Signal Technology (AST) at RI&S.

The Other Transaction Authority agreement is for Phase 1 of the HADES Multi-Domain Sensing System, or MDSS, program to provide electronic intelligence and communications intelligence sensors. RI&S will demonstrate system capabilities that will help inform the design, upgrades and prototype fabrication of future phases of the program.

«Raytheon AST has a 35-plus year history of developing intelligence-collection sensors, as well as high-speed signal processing», said Fisher. «And solutions across RI&S cover a broad range of mission requirements that could define the future HADES program».

HADES will be a globally deployable platform that provides multi-faceted sensing capabilities at higher altitudes and longer ranges, and with longer endurance than current platforms.

Effort sponsored by the U.S. Government under Other Transaction number W15QKN-17-9-5555 between the Consortium Management Group, Inc., and the Government. The U.S. Government is authorized to reproduce and distribute reprints for Government purposes notwithstanding any copyright notation thereon.

The views and conclusions contained herein are those of the authors and should not be interpreted as necessarily representing the official policies or endorsements, either expressed or implied, of the U.S. Government.

Precision Approach

The Joint Precision Approach and Landing System, also known as JPALS, made by Raytheon Intelligence & Space, a Raytheon Technologies business, is now deployed on two international platforms.

JPALS
JPALS system operational on the UK’s QNLZ and Italy’s Cavour

The system will be used to perform joint operations with the U.S. Marine Corps aboard the UK Royal Navy’s HMS Queen Elizabeth (R08). It is also installed on the ITS Cavour, an Italian aircraft carrier, the flagship of the Marina Militare, to support their F-35 Lightning II squadron.

JPALS, a differential GPS precision landing system, guides aircraft onto carriers and amphibious assault ships in all weather and surface conditions. The system is being deployed on all U.S. Navy aircraft carriers and amphibious assault ships. All F-35 Lightning II aircraft are equipped with JPALS capability, and the system is currently being used on the F-35B Lightning II and F-35C Lightning II.

«The Cavour JPALS is the first system to be permanently installed on a foreign ship», said Denis Donohue, vice president of Communications & Airspace Management Systems at Raytheon Intelligence & Space. «JPALS will add significant mission capabilities for our international allies and partners who are flying the F-35 Lightning II».

The system has completed flight testing and Category I and II certifications in preparation for deployments.

Next Generation Jammer

Raytheon Intelligence & Space, a Raytheon Technologies business, has completed Milestone C for the U.S. Navy’s Next Generation Jammer Mid-Band, or NGJ-MB.

NGJ-MB
An EA-18G Growler from Air Test and Evaluation Squadron (VX) 23, located at Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Maryland, conducts a Next Generation Jammer Mid-Band (NGJ-MB) flight test over Southern Maryland recently (U.S. Navy photo by Steve Wolff)

«We’re well into development testing. It’s time to move towards production», said Annabel Flores, vice president of Electronic Warfare Systems at Raytheon Intelligence & Space. «We’re ready to give the Navy and our Australian partners a leap forward towards the electromagnetic spectrum superiority they need».

The recommendation from the Milestone Decision Authority is based on the program’s achievements to date and an assessment of readiness to enter Low Rate Initial Production, or LRIP.

«The Milestone C decision drives home the stability and maturity of NGJ-MB», said Flores. «The system is ready for validation and LRIP, and we’re gearing up for the delivery of this critical capability to the fleet».

To date, NGJ-MB has successfully completed over 145 hours of developmental flight testing using Mission Systems and Aeromechanical pods. NGJ-MB has also completed over 3,100 hours of anechoic chamber and lab testing at Naval Air Stations Patuxent River, Maryland, and Point Mugu, California. Chamber tests evaluated the system’s performance both on and off the EA-18G Growler aircraft, in addition to jamming techniques and reliability testing.

NGJ-MB is the Navy’s advanced electronic attack system that offensively denies, disrupts and degrades enemy technology, including air-defense systems and communications. NGJ-MB uses the latest digital, software-based and Active Electronically Scanned Array technologies. This allows operators to non-kinetically attack significantly more targets and at greater distances.

AESA radar prototype

Raytheon Intelligence & Space (RI&S), a Raytheon Technologies business, delivered the APG-79(V)4 Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar prototype to the U.S. Marine Corps. The prototype allows for early flight testing and completion of weapon systems integration on the Hornet platform.

APG-79(V)4 AESA
Raytheon Intelligence & Space Delivered Prototype Radar to U.S. Marine Corps

The APG-79(V)4 is a scaled version of the APG-79 AESA radar that helps pilots detect and track enemy aircraft from farther distances and with more accuracy than the legacy APG-73 system. The radar’s improved targeting capabilities provide an edge in crucial operations including air-to-air, maritime strike and air-to-surface missions. Powered by gallium nitride (GaN), the APG-79(V)4 is the first domestic implementation of a GaN-based fire control radar, with GaN Transmit/Receive Modules embedded directly into the array.

«Aircrews must have access to new tools to support readiness», said Eric Ditmars, vice president of Secure Sensor Solutions for RI&S. «The upgrade to AESA radar offers increased reliability and sustainability for the customer, which equates to lower maintenance and repair costs, and increased aircraft availability».

The smaller radar shares much of the same parts and technology as the AN/APG-79 radar used in the F/A-18 Super Hornet aircraft.

The first 25 production AESA radars will be delivered starting in December 2021 as part of the $83.6 million production contract awarded in 2020.

ISR aircraft

In a modern military conflict, the amount of information flying around can be overwhelming. Signals sail in from everywhere. Some of it is intelligence. Some of it is noise. It comes from friends and from foes. And it creates chaos.

Bombardier Global 6500
The Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition and Reconnaissance system, an aircraft that collects, analyzes and delivers near real-time intelligence and a highly accurate common operating picture, will help commanders make better-informed decisions

Raytheon Intelligence & Space, a Raytheon Technologies business, can help armed forces in the air and on the ground make sense of this increasingly crowded, complex and converged battlespace.

The company is proposing an aircraft called the Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition and Reconnaissance system, or ISTAR. It would collect, analyze and deliver near real-time intelligence and a highly accurate common operating picture to help commanders make the right decisions.

«Our advanced multi-intelligence aircraft will sense, process and transmit copious amounts of information rapidly and at long range in highly contested environments», said Barbara Borgonovi, vice president of Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Systems for RI&S.

The ISTAR would use multiple intelligence, or multi-INT, technology, in keeping with the demands of modern military technology. Multi-INT weaves in critical intelligence inputs from multiple sensors across the spectrum such as visuals, radio frequencies and electronic communications, among other signals, and it paints a clearer, multi-faceted picture of the adversary’s movements and changes in the battlespace.

«When the threat environment was a bit simpler, forces could really rely on one major sensor for their intelligence needs and capabilities», said Richard Sandifer, Korea ISTAR capture executive at RI&S. «A single, great radar was the only thing needed to understand what the enemy was doing. But it is not possible to get the total intelligence picture from just one radar anymore».

RI&S is partnering with aircraft maker Bombardier to modify its Global 6500 business jet. The airframe would be outfitted with multiple capabilities, including an advanced active electronically scanned array RF system, which combines ground moving target indicator capabilities with synthetic aperture modes; multi-spectral long range imagery, which provides visible and infrared intelligence and targeting information; and signals intelligence – an entire suite to deliver the precision and intelligence for making decisions and maintain the advantage of strategic surprise to spot and combat threats first.

In comparison to existing reconnaissance aircraft, RI&S’ ISTAR would fly longer, at higher altitudes and with more electrical power, enabling the plane to carry more capabilities.

«The increased power payload will help increase the sensing capability, as well as the capability for onboard processing and the entire platform», said Sandifer. The asset is large enough to scale, offering flexibility to the customer to add capabilities over time.

In particular, the system can employ advanced intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities to help ward off adversaries posturing from a distance and denying access to threats.

«Anti-access/Area Denial is everywhere», said Jason Colosky, ISRS business development executive, using a military term for suppressing an adversary’s movement. «So, you have to have an asset that has the time and duration to be in the air long enough to provide intelligence to commanders before deciding to queue firepower against the adversary. ISTAR has those capabilities, enabling the operators to see deep into a non-permissive environment».

The ISTAR system would offer a fully integrated battlefield management command-and-control processing capability, enabling service members at every operational level to strategically plan and cohesively execute missions in lockstep with their allies.

Additionally, the ISTAR fleet could help enforce maritime embargoes, monitor natural disasters, direct humanitarian aid, ensure border security and bolster missile defense.

«We have a heritage of providing reliable ISTAR capabilities that have been proven in contested theaters in support of allied operations by deploying the first international ISTAR-type aircraft in the United Kingdom», said Sandifer. «That operational experience and lessons learned are being applied to our latest smart ISR aircraft enabling operators to make accurate and fast decisions in the congested battlespace when it matters the most».

High Energy Laser

Raytheon Intelligence & Space (RI&S), a Raytheon Technologies business, delivered the next high-energy laser weapon system to the U.S. Air Force. It will be deployed overseas for operator training and experimental testing and evaluation. Following the completion of the Directed Energy Weapon Initial Operational Employment Review and Approval Process, High Energy Laser Weapon System (HELWS) is now certified for use in combat.

HELWS
Raytheon Intelligence & Space delivers another Air Force laser system ready for operational use

«HELWS builds directly on the feedback we received from operators in the field», said Annabel Flores, vice president of Electronic Warfare Systems at RI&S. «We’ve made the system more rugged. We improved its accuracy and overall efficiency based on real-world lessons learned in an operational environment».

This system features a number of improvements, including ruggedized enhancements to ensure transportability and survivability in a wide range of operational environments; a new beam director for more accurate targeting; and a robust power system for additional magazine depth – the ability to fire the laser for a longer period of time.

«You can take down dozens of drones on a single charge», said Flores. «And if you are plugged into a generator, you have deep, rechargeable magazines».

Mounted on a Polaris MRZR all-terrain vehicle, HELWS uses a variant of RI&S’ Multi-spectral Targeting System, an electro-optical/infrared sensor that detects, identifies and tracks unmanned aerial threats.

A prior version of HELWS was deployed in a forward operating environment earlier this year and recently passed 1,000 hours of operations. RI&S is contracted to deliver another further improved system to the Air Force later this year.

One step closer

Raytheon Intelligence & Space (RI&S), a Raytheon Technologies business, will build two prototype sensor payloads for DARPA’s Blackjack program, under a $37M contract. Blackjack is a low Earth orbit satellite constellation program that aims to develop and demonstrate the critical elements for persistent global coverage against a range of advanced threats. It seeks to track multiple threats simultaneously for faster and earlier warning for national security.

Constellation of low earth orbit sensors to be delivered to DARPA

«Constellations offer built-in resiliency – strength in numbers», said Wallis Laughrey, Space & Command and Control communication (C2) Systems lead for Raytheon Intelligence & Space. «The entire network of satellites can continue to operate uninterrupted, even if one drops off».

RI&S is reducing integration timelines for rapid deployment, having completed Blackjack’s preliminary design review in October 2019. During preliminary design review, RI&S engaged with major subcontractors to confirm costs and ensure the team would be ready to go to production. The company is leveraging its advanced manufacturing capabilities, fast-production and commercial space programs to deliver the two sensors.

«Blackjack is innovative in its simplicity», said Laughrey. «We’ve incorporated mature tech like advanced algorithms and optics that allow us to go fast, but from day one, our primary design driver was manufacturing for cost».

RI&S’ Blackjack production will support the team for the constellation’s autonomous mission management system, Pit Boss. Pit Boss interconnects all of the data from the Blackjack satellite constellation, acting as the collection and processing hub to deliver data to the right person at the right time.

The RI&S contract goes through critical design review and support to the systems integrator for integration with Pit Boss and the space vehicle. It also includes launch campaign support and the on-orbit demonstration. Following Critical Design Review (CDR) in November 2020, DARPA has the option to order an additional eight or 18 sensor payloads.

Landing System

Raytheon Intelligence & Space, a Raytheon Technologies business delivered the first production unit of the Joint Precision Approach and Landing System, or JPALS, to the U.S. Navy 20 days ahead of schedule. This delivery follows the completion of 12 engineering development models. JPALS, a differential GPS precision landing system, guides aircraft onto carriers and amphibious assault ships in all weather and surface conditions and is integrated on the F-35.

Raytheon Intelligence & Space delivers first JPALS production unit ahead of schedule

«Landing a 15-ton fighter jet flying at hundreds of knots per hour on an aircraft carrier in rolling seas is daunting to say the least», says Matt Gilligan, vice president, Raytheon Intelligence & Space. «JPALS makes those landings simpler, safer and more precise. JPALS gives the Navy the landing accuracy it needs every time regardless of conditions. It is more than an approach and landing system – it is a safety system».

JPALS uses an encrypted datalink to connect software and receiver hardware on the aircraft to an array of GPS sensors, mast-mounted antennas and shipboard equipment, to provide surveillance, ship-relative navigation and precision approach and landing in and around the carrier-controlled airspace.

Applications for JPALS extend beyond the seas. The system has the potential to help expeditionary forces land manned and unmanned aircraft safely in any condition, anywhere. An expeditionary JPALS (eJPALS) could be used for special operations missions or guiding aircraft during humanitarian relief efforts. eJPALS would provide straight, curved and multi-segmented precision approach capabilities and has the capacity to support up to 50 different approaches to touchdown points within a 20-nautical-mile radius of the system.