Air Force eyes upgrades to PAVE PAWS, BMEWS, and PARCS ballistic missile warning radar

HANSCOM AFB, Mass., 1 Feb. 2012. Military radar experts at the U.S. Air Force Electronic Systems Center (ESC) at Hanscom Air Force Base, Mass., are reaching out to industry in the beginning of what may become a long-term project to modernize and upgrade three ageing ground-based ballistic missile warning radar systems -- PAVE PAWS, which is short for Phased Array Warning System; the Ballistic Missile Early Warning System (BMEWS); and the Perimeter Acquisition Radar Attack Characterization System (PARCS).

Air Force ESC officials have issued a request for information (solicitation number: 01262012) to identify defense companies that could oversee or contribute to systems upgrades and technology insertion for the PAVE PAWS, BMEWS, and PARCS ballistic missile early warning radar systems. Companies interested have until 23 Feb. to make their capabilities known.

The PAVE PAWS and BMEWS upgrades will involve technology refresh for the front-end and remoting capabilities of those radar systems. The PARCS upgrade project may require technology insertion for the back-end processing capabilities that will support front-end modernization. PAVE PAWS and BMEWS will have received significant upgrades to their data- and signal-processing subsystems by 2016 in separate efforts.

PAVE PAWS is a ground-based radar system that provides U.S. Strategic Command (USSTRATCOM) at Offutt Air Force Base near Omaha, Neb., with warning and attack-assessment information on all intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) launched throughout the world that might be headed for U.S. territory.

BMEWS, meanwhile, is a ground-based radar system that helps warn USSTRATCOM and NATO authorities of submarine- and sea-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) attacks and provides data to help evaluate the severity of ballistic missile attacks.

PARCS is a large radar installation in North Dakota that provides ballistic missile warning and attack assessment, as well as space surveillance data to the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) Peterson Air Force Base, Colo., as well as to USSTRATCOM and regional combatant commanders. PARCS monitors and tracks more than half of all Earth-orbiting objects with its AN/FPQ-16 phased-array radar system pointed northward over Hudson Bay, and analyzes more than 20,000 tracks per day, from giant satellites to space debris.

PARCS was built in the early 1970s, and its signal processing has received only superficial fixes since the site went online in 1975. PARCS uses 1960s-era technology, which is not widely used, and few sources are available for depot-level repair on failed components, Air Force officials say.

The PAVE PAWS and BMEWS beam steering unit (BSU), receiver exciter (REX), receiver beam former (RBF), array group driver (AGD), radio frequency monitor (RFM), frequency time standard (FTS), and the corporate feed (CFD) were built for these five radars in the late 1970s and were upgraded in the 1980s, Air Force officials say. The REX and FTS already have been redesigned and upgraded at the Beale Air Force Base, Calif., Fylingdales, England, and Thule, Greenland sites as part of the Upgraded Early Warning Radar (UEWR) programs. They will be upgraded at the Clear, Alaska, and Cape Cod, Mass., sites by 2016 or 2017., officials say.

Still, the PAVE PAWS and BMEWS have not upgraded the array front end of these radar systems, and this equipment has been in service without being replaced for More than 20 years and is rapidly nearing obsolescence, which requires a substantial technology-refresh effort.

The PARCS signal processing group (SPG) consists of 10 cabinets of equipment with hundreds of unique parts. The SPG generates frequency-modulated pulses for transmission, spectrum inversion, and pulse compression; performs side lobe reduction; as well as compares and processes track signals, multiplexing, and signal conversion. Extensive alignment and maintenance are necessary to maintain proper signal reception and analog digital conversion, Air Force officials explain.

Air Force officials are asking for information from industry on ways to upgrade the system, and will use this information to define funding needs, technical approaches, and acquisition strategy.

Fundamental requirements involve maintaining the overall mission support capabilities of the existing system; minimizing system downtime during system replacement or modernization; and detecting and tracking objects per BMEWS and PAVE PAWS specifications.

Air Force officials particularly are interested in information on how to upgrade the radio frequency (RF) Front end of the early warning UHF radars to include hardware, software, and manufacturing, including design maturity Technology Readiness Level (TRL), development funding to TRL 6, cost estimates, and similar experience with phased array radar technology. The Air Force also is interested in concepts for operating the PARCS, PAVE PAWS, and BMEWS radars remotely.

E-mail responses no later than 23 Feb. 2012 to the Air Force's Curtis DeVries at curt.devries@hanscom.af.mil. For questions or concerns contact DeVries by e-mail.

More information is online at https://www.fbo.gov/spg/USAF/AFMC/ESC/01262012/listing.html.


Get All the Military Aerospace Electronics News Delivered to Your Inbox or Your Mailbox

Subscribe to Military Aerospace Electronics Magazine or email newsletter today at no cost and receive the latest information on:


  • C4ISR
  • Cyber Security
  • Embedded Computing
  • Unmanned Vehicles

Military & Aerospace Photos

Most Popular Articles

Related Products

XPand6020 | Small Form Factor (SFF) System Featuring XPedite5205 Running Cisco IOS® and XPedite7450

The XPand6020 is a Small Form Factor (SFF) system that features an XPedite5205, which runs Cisco ...

XChange3013 | 3U VPX Gigabit Ethernet Switch with Optional Layer 2 Switching and Layer 3 Routing Management Support

The XChange3013 is a conduction- or air-cooled, 3U VPX Ethernet switch module. The XChange3013 pr...

XPort3200 | Freescale QorIQ P1020 Processor-Based Conduction- or Air-Cooled XMC/PMC IEEE 1588v2 Grandmaster Clock Module

The XPort3200 is a rugged, IEEE 1588v2 Precision Time Protocol (PTP) ordinary clock with grandmas...

XPand3200 Series | Sub-½ ATR, Conduction-Cooled Systems Supporting Conduction-Cooled Modules

The XPand3200 Series redefines the limits of power, performance, and functionality in a sub-½ ATR...

XPedite7472 | Intel® Core™ i7 Processor-Based Conduction- or Air-Cooled 3U VPX-REDI SBC with SecureCOTS™

The XPedite7472 is a secure and high-performance, 3U VPX-REDI, single board computer based on the...

XPedite5401 | Freescale Eight-Core P4080 Conduction-Cooled PrPMC/XMC Module with Two GbE Ports

The XPedite5401 is a high-performance PrPMC/XMC, single board computer supporting Freescale QorIQ...

XChange3018 | 3U VPX 10 Gigabit Ethernet Switch with Optional Layer 2 Switching and Layer 3 Routing Management Support

The XChange3018 is a conduction- or air-cooled, 3U VPX, 10 Gigabit Ethernet switch module. The XC...

XPort5005 | XMC Form Factor PCIe Mini Card Carrier Board

The XPort5005 is an XMC module that can be quickly configured to support a platform’s specific I/...

XPand4200 Series | ½ ATR Lightweight Forced-Air-Cooled Chassis for Conduction-Cooled Modules

The XPand4200 Series redefines the limits of power, performance, and functionality in a sub-½ ATR...

XCalibur1603 | Freescale QorIQ Eight-Core P4080 Processor-Based Air-Cooled 6U cPCI SBC

The XCalibur1603 is a high-performance, 6U cPCI, single board computer supporting Freescale QorIQ...

Related Companies

General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc

GA-ASI is a leading manufacturer of proven, reliable Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA) systems, radars, and electro-opt...

DiCon Fiberoptics Inc

Offers fiber optic switches, tunable filters, and VOAs. Founded in 1986, the company is a US based, AS9100 certified,...

Curtiss-Wright Defense Solutions

About Curtiss-Wright Defense Solutions Curtiss-Wright Defense Solutions (CWDS) is a long established techno...

DDC-I Inc

Offers complete solutions for embedded software developers with a focus on mission- and safety-critical applications....

Harris Corporation

Harris provides advanced, technology-based solutions that solve government and commercial customers' mission critical...

United Electronic Industries Inc

UEI is a leader in the PC/Ethernet data acquisition and control, Data Logger/Recorder and Programmable Automation Con...

Crane Aerospace & Electronics

When failure is NOT an option...rely on Crane Aerospace & Electronics. We supply high-density, high-reliability c...

MERITEC

Signal integrity leaders and preferred vertically integrated manufacturer of high-performance electrical and electron...

AcQ Inducom

Develops and produces non-certified and certified high-tech modular hardware- and software solutions for on-board and...

Advanced Conversion Technology Inc

ACT designs and manufactures, since 1981, an extensive range of AC-DC and DC-DC power supplies (switching, linear, ra...
Wire News provided by   

Press Releases

CURTISS-WRIGHT AWARDED CONTRACT BY SIERRA NEVADA CORPORATION

Curtiss-Wright Corporation today announced that its Defense Solutions division has received a contract from Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) to supply its small form factor ...

Innovative Integration Announces the FMC-Servo

Camarillo, CA June 19, 2015, Innovative Integration, a trusted supplier of signal processing and data acquisition hardware and software solutions, today announced the FMC-S...

METADATA SUPPORT ENHANCES INDUSTRY-LEADING HD VIDEO MANAGEMENT SYSTEM FROM CURTISS-WRIGHT

Curtiss-Wright Corporation today announced that its Defense Solutions division has further enhanced its innovative VRD1 high definition (HD) video management system (VMS) w...

Webcasts

Harsh Environment Protection for Advanced Electronics and Components

This webinar will offer an opportunity to learn more about ultra-thin Parylene conformal coatings – how they are applied, applications they protect today, and the properties and benefits they offer, includin...

New Design Tools That Help You Develop Radar That Sees the Un-seeable and Detects the Undetectable

Xilinx EW/ISR System Architect, Luke Miller, has new tricks and he’s going to tell you all about them in a new Xilinx Webinar—for free. His Webinar will cover new ways to implement Radar functions including ...
Sponsored by:

All Access Sponsors


Mil & Aero Magazine

June 2015
Volume 26, Issue 6
file

Download Our Apps



iPhone

iPad

Android

Follow Us On...



Newsletters

Military & Aerospace Electronics

Weekly newsletter covering technical content, breaking news and product information
SUBSCRIBE

Cyber Security

Monthly newsletter covering cyber warfare, cyber security, information warfare, and information security technologies, products, contracts, and procurement opportunities
SUBSCRIBE

Defense Executive

Monthly newsletter covering business news and strategic insights for executive managers
SUBSCRIBE

Electronic Warfare

Quarterly newsletter covering technologies and applications in electronic warfare, cyber warfare, optical warfare, and spectrum warfare.
SUBSCRIBE

Embedded Computing Report

Monthly newsletter covering news on embedded computing in aerospace, defense and industrial-rugged applications
SUBSCRIBE

Unmanned Vehicles

Monthly newsletter covering news updates for designers of unmanned vehicles
SUBSCRIBE