Raytheon to upgrade hardware and software in sea- and land-based X-band missile-defense radar
REDSTONE ARSENAL, Ala. – Radar experts at the Raytheon Co. will upgrade a floating, self-propelled, mobile active electronically scanned array (AESA) early warning radar station designed for ballistic missile defense under terms of an upcoming contract.
Officials of the U.S. Missile Defense Agency (MDA) at Redstone Arsenal, Ala., announced plans Tuesday to award a five-year contract to the Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems segment in Woburn, Mass., to upgrade the Sea-Based X-band (SBX) radar, as well as the AN/TPY-2 transportable missile-defense radar.
The nine-story-high SBX radar from Raytheon and Boeing is the world's largest X-band radar, and is designed to operate in high winds and heavy seas. Raytheon developed the system originally for ballistic missile defense.
The land-based AN/TPY-2, meanwhile, can detect, classify, and track ballistic missiles in two modes -- one to detect ballistic missiles as they rise, and another that can guide interceptors toward a descending warhead. The value of the upcoming contract from the MDA Sensors Directorate has yet to be negotiated.
This contract will include product improvement such as software and hardware upgrades for enhanced capabilities, risk reduction, mitigating electronic parts obsolescence, hardware redesign, technology insertion, component refurbishment, and cyber security enhancements.
The floating SBX radar, which displaces more than 50,000 tons, is a semi-submersible oil-production platform topped with a large X-band radar, and is designed to support ground-based midcourse ballistic missile defense.
The SBX measures 240 feet wide and 390 feet long, and includes a power plant, bridge and control rooms, living quarters, storage areas, and the X-band radar, which is the largest, most sophisticated phased array electro-mechanically steered X-band radar in the world, Raytheon officials say.
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