PALMDALE, Calif., 15 Oct. 2012. The U.S. Air Force's fleet of B-2 stealth bombers will be receiving new processing subsystems under a $108 million low rate initial production contract awarded Sept. 28 to Northrop Grumman Corp. (NYSE:NOC).
The new hardware and software, which includes an integrated processing unit, a high-capacity disk drive, and a fiber optic cable network, will allow the aircraft to perform advanced communications and weapons delivery missions in the future. The new subsystems are being produced as part of Increment 1 of the Air Force's B-2 extremely high frequency (EHF) satellite communications program.
Northrop Grumman is the Air Force's prime contractor for the B-2 Spirit, the flagship of the nation's long-range strike arsenal and one of the world's most survivable aircraft systems. The B-2 is the only combat-proven stealth platform in the current U.S. inventory.
In late July, the EHF Increment 1 hardware and software completed a series of operational tests conducted by the Air Force. Northrop Grumman is also beginning to install the new subsystems in a limited number of aircraft as part of the current EHF Increment 1 system development and demonstration contract.