Lockheed Martin to build two additional TL-29A towed-array sonar systems to detect quiet submarines

SAN DIEGO – Undersea surveillance experts at Lockheed Martin Corp. will provide twin-line towed-array sonar systems to the U.S. Navy with the capability to detect quiet diesel- and nuclear-powered submarines.

Feb 20th, 2018
Lockheed Martin to build two additional TL-29A towed-array sonar systems to detect quiet submarines
Lockheed Martin to build two additional TL-29A towed-array sonar systems to detect quiet submarines
SAN DIEGO –Undersea surveillance experts at Lockheed Martin Corp. will provide twin-line towed-array sonar systems to the U.S. Navy with the capability to detect quiet diesel- and nuclear-powered submarines.

Officials of the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command (SPAWAR) in San Diego, announced a $50.9 million contract modification to the Lockheed Martin Rotary and Mission Systems segment in Liverpool, N.Y., on Friday for additional work on the twin line towed array (TL-29A) system.

The deal calls for Lockheed Martin to provide two TL-29A systems, one TL-29A spare array, two array refurbishments, and additional engineering services, material, and spares.

These twin-line towed-array sonar systems are to support the Naval Sea Systems Command's Maritime Surveillance Systems Program Office, Program Executive Office Submarines. The modification increases the original contract's value from $101.1 million to $151.9 million.

Related: Lockheed Martin to build anti-submarine warfare (ASW) towed-array sonar systems for surface warships

The twin-line 29A array (TL-29A) is a passive, low-frequency sensor system towed by the T-AGOS surveillance ship. Each array comprises a chain of acoustic, telemetry, and interface modules linked together in an integrated system.

The TL-29A's passive acoustic and signal-processing technologies can hear submarines at long range and in various sea states. The towed-array sonar is designed particularly to detect and track the new generation of extremely quiet diesel electric submarines operated by foreign navies.

The TL-29A sonar is configured as a pair of mile-long arrays that are towed side-by-side from an electro-optic tow cable attached to a winch on the deck of the host surface ship.

Two critical advantages of the TL-29A are its endurance and ability to be towed in the shallow waters of the littoral zones in coastal waters and in harbors.

Related: L-3 to build six more TB-29A CTA towed array sonar systems for Virginia-class submarines

As a passive sensor, TL-29A does not generate a signal but uses sensitive hydrophones to listen for the faint sounds emitted by extremely quiet diesel electric submarines.

The TL-29A, along with its submarine-mounted cousin, the TB-29A, is the first array to use an advanced telemetry called towed array integrated product team (TAIPT). The TAIPT is a commercial off-the-shelf (COTS)-based telemetry architecture.

On this contract Lockheed Martin will do the work in Syracuse, N.Y., and should be finished by February 2018. For more information contact Lockheed Martin Rotary and Mission Systems online at www.lockheedmartin.com/us/rms.html, or SPAWAR at www.spawar.navy.mil.

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