PATUXENT RIVER NAS, Md. - Boeing military avionics experts will design and build an advanced electronic device that enables two or more radio-frequency (RF) and microwave systems to operate together aboard U.S. Navy F/A-18E/F and EA-18G combat aircraft without interfering with each other.
Officials of the Naval Air Systems Command at Patuxent River Naval Air Station, Md., announced a $13.5 million order to the Boeing Defense, Space & Security segment in St. Louis to build and test the Radio Frequency Blanking Unit (RFBU). An RF interference blanker permits simultaneous operation of two or more pieces of radio or radar equipment without confusion of intelligence, or that suppresses undesired signals when used with one receiver.
The RFBU is to be a form, fit, and function replacement for the Enhanc- ed Interference Blanking Unit (EIBU) aboard the Navy's carrier-based F/A-18 E/F Super Hornet jet fighter bomber and EA-18G Growler electronic warfare aircraft. The RFBU will help mitigate the effects of co-site interference aboard the Super Hornet and Growler. Both aircraft have many sophisticated RF and microwave systems on board, which can pose the risk of interfering with one another, especially given that aircraft use closely spaced antennas.
The RFBU will be a same-size upgrade and replacement of the EIBU that switches out obsolete electronic parts, or those difficult-to-find parts with diminishing manufacturing sources. Boeing also will design the new RFBU to accommodate future upgrades and growth in capabilities.
The new RFBU will enhance input/output signal capacity of the AN/USQ-140 Multifunctional Informational Distribution System (MIDS) Low Volume Terminal (LVT) aboard the F/A-18E/F and EA-18G aircraft. MIDS LVT is a secure data and voice communication network using the Link-16 tactical wireless networking architecture. MIDS LVT provides enhanced situational awareness, positive identification of participants within the network, secure fighter-to-fighter voice and data networking, secure voice communications, and tactical air navigation.
Boeing will do the work in St. Louis and Melbourne, Fla., and should be finished by February 2018.
FOR MORE INFORMATION visit Boeing Defense, Space & Security online atwww.boeing.com/defense.