The Northrop Grumman and Lockheed Martin joint venture, Longbow, has announced the successful completion of the Army’s AH-64E Apache Follow-On Test and Evaluation II (FOT&E II) for the AN/APG-78 LONGBOW Fire Control Radar (FCR).
During the FOT&E, the modernised LONGBOW FCR successfully demonstrated many new operational modes and capabilities, including maritime, single target track, and 360-degree surveillance mode, as well as extended detection range capability against land, air and sea targets.
The detection range has doubled and improved detection of unmanned aerial vehicles.
Susan Bruce, Longbow vice president and vice president at Northrop Grumman Mission Systems, explained, "Our open systems architecture approach allowed us to unlock phenomenal performance without any hardware changes. Version six is a major update to LONGBOW’s capabilities providing significant situational awareness and targeting capabilities to the warfighter."
Validating these performance enhancements during FOT&E, the LONGBOW radar successfully detected numerous ground and maritime targets at extended detection ranges. Those targets were then engaged and destroyed by AGM-179 Joint Air-to-Ground Missile missiles fired from the Apache helicopter.
The LONGBOW radar provides Apache aircrews with automatic target detection, location, classification and prioritisation, while enabling rapid, multi-target engagement in all weather conditions, over multiple types of terrain and through battlefield obstacles.
"LONGBOW’s Version 6 software helps increase survivability to the AH-64E aircrews, reduces workload and enhances stand-off range,” explained Jim Messina, LBL JV president and program director at Lockheed Martin.
To date, nearly 500 LONGBOW FCR systems have been delivered to the US Army in 12 nations.
Boeing has confirmed the AH-64E Apache as its offering for LAND 4503 – Apache is flown by the US and 15 other countries, and has recorded more than 4.5 million flight hours with the US Army alone. There are currently 1,180 Apaches in service.
LAND 4503's program of delivery aims to support the Australian Army and is designed to contribute to the creation of the modernisation and development of a 'networked and hardened' Army. The acquisition is broken down into three delivery stages, beginning with projected IOC in 2026 and FOC in 2028.
Headquartered in Bethesda, Maryland, Lockheed Martin is a global security and aerospace company that employs approximately 100,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services.
Northrop Grumman is a global security company providing innovative systems, products and solutions in autonomous systems, cyber, C4ISR, space, strike, and logistics and modernisation to customers worldwide.