SYRACUSE, N.Y., 14 July 2008. Lockheed Martin officials broke ground last week on a $15 million, 9,600 square-foot radar test facility that will provide the company with one of the world's most advanced, large-antenna measurement systems.
"Our new radar test facility will support next-generation sensor development for 21st-century radar systems with extremely accurate and rapid antenna signal characterization capabilities," explains Carl Bannar, vice president of Lockheed Martin Radar Systems.
The new 80-foot tall structure will be added on to the existing EP-6 building at Lockheed Martin's Radar Systems facility in Syracuse, N.Y. The new facility, which will open in the summer of 2009, will house a large high-precision, spherical near-field radar test and measurement systems, Lockheed Martin officials say.
It will house state-of-the-art measurement equipment that will be used to design, analyze, characterize, and test future radar systems ranging from the smallest systems to next-generation digital phased array systems. The center will perform highly-accurate antenna, radar system, and radar cross-section measurements at a wide range of frequencies, company officials say. The equipment will enable automation of a precision antenna measurement process from set-up through analysis and report generation.
MI Technologies of Suwanee, Ga., a supplier of RF and microwave antennae and radar cross section testing products, systems and services, is building the new Lockheed Martin radar structure.
A key component is the new center's electromagnetically-shielded anechoic chamber. Lined with special foam to absorb radio frequency (RF) radiation and suppress potentially interfering external acoustics and frequencies, the chamber will provide greater test security of sensitive government equipment.
The Medium Extended Air Defense System (MEADS will be one of the first users of the facility. MEADS is a mobile air and missile defense system designed to replace Patriot systems in the U.S. and Germany and Nike Hercules systems in Italy. Lockheed Martin's Syracuse facility is developing the new MEADS surveillance radar and will contribute software and hardware components of the MEADS Multifunction Fire Control Radar.