Posted by John Keller
WASHINGTON, 3 June 2013. U.S. Navy officials are asking engineers at the General Dynamics Corp. Advanced Information Systems segment in Fairfax, Va., to upgrade shipboard electronic warfare (EW) systems under terms of a $15 million contract announced Friday.
The Naval Sea Systems Command in Washington is asking General Dynamics to provide nine high-gain, high-sensitivity systems in support of the Surface Electronic Warfare Improvement Program (SEWIP) Block 1B3 low-rate initial production requirements.
This equipment will provide SEWIP with the ability to detect and identify additional threat emitters and provide warning to the combat system to enhance SEWIP capabilities.
The SEWIP program is upgrading the Navy's existing AN/SLQ-32(V) electronic warfare system by improving the receiver and antenna group to meet current and anticipated threats, as well as to yield improved system integration, Navy officials say.
Since the SEWIP program started in 2002, General Dynamics Advanced Information Systems (AIS) in Fairfax, Va., acted as prime contractor for SEWIP blocks 1A, 1B1, 1B2, and 1B3. Lockheed Martin Radar Systems won a Navy award for block 2 in late 2009.
In early 2012, Raytheon Co. and Lockheed Martin formed a team to capture a Navy award for the system's newest generation, SEWIP Block 3. The different SEWIP variants will provide more effective capability for countering hostile electronic signals actively and passively.
The Lockheed Martin-Raytheon team demonstrated the Block 3 SEWIP last year during the RIMPAC naval exercise in the Pacific. The Lockheed Martin Corp. Radar Systems segment in Liverpool, N.Y., won a contract late last month to build advanced-development prototypes of the SEWIP Block 2 system.
Developed by Raytheon in the 1970s, the original AN/SLQ-32 systems employed passive radar technology for early warning, identification and tracking of enemy threats. Subsequent upgrades provided an additional active capability for simultaneous jamming of several different threats.
On the contract awarded Friday, General Dynamics will do the work in Fairfax, Va., and should be finished by March 2015.