BAE Systems to provide IFF shipboard antenna for Navy destroyers, amphibious assault ships

PATUXENT RIVER NAS, Md., 2 June 2015. U.S. Navy aerial warfare systems designers are looking to BAE Systems to provide special circular shipboard antenna arrays for the AN/UPX-29(V) identification-friend-or-foe (IFF) interrogator system aboard surface warships.

BAE Systems to provide IFF shipboard antenna for Navy destroyers, amphibious assault ships
BAE Systems to provide IFF shipboard antenna for Navy destroyers, amphibious assault ships
PATUXENT RIVER NAS, Md., 2 June 2015. U.S. Navy aerial warfare systems designers are looking to BAE Systems to provide special circular shipboard antenna arrays for the AN/UPX-29(V) identification-friend-or-foe (IFF) interrogator system aboard surface warships.

Officials of the Naval Air Systems Command at Patuxent River Naval Air Station, Md., announced a three-year $30 million contract Friday to the BAE Systems Electronic Systems segment in Nashua, N.H., to provide six OE-120(A) electronically steerable antenna (ESA) groups.

The BAE Systems OE-120 antenna group is an electronically steerable antenna that shipboard operators can redirect within 50 microseconds to interrogate any target on the horizon. The antenna array supports IFF interrogator as well as air traffic control beacon systems, and is designed for surface ships and land-based installations.

The AN/UPX-29 shipboard interrogator is a centralized IFF system that employs a challenge and reply technique to distinguish friendly platforms in a multi-target environment.

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The OE-120(A) electronically steerable antenna us suitable for the Navy's Ticonderoga-class cruiser (CG 47), the Arleigh Burke-class destroyer (DDG 51), the Wasp-class amphibious assault ship (LHD 1), the San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock (LPD 17), aircraft carriers, and the Japanese Kongo-class destroyer (FMS DD 173) -- a version of the U.S. Burke-class destroyer.

The contract announced Friday calls for BAE Systems to provide OE-120(A) antennas for use on four Navy Burke-class destroyers, one America-class amphibious assault ship, and for the U.S. Missile Defense Agency. The contract is for system upgrades to stave off component obsolescence.

The AN/UPX-29(V) shipboard IFF interrogator, for which the OE-120(A) antenna is part, distinguishes friendly vessels and aircraft nearby during combat operations.

The AN/UPX-29(V) can process and store as man as 400 targets, provide instantaneous interrogation on a target within 25 microseconds, electronically evaluate Mode 4 replies, call up operator-designated target information, display IFF targets synchronized with as many as four radars at 22 displays, and interface with shipboard computers.

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At the heart of the OE-120 system is the AS-3134/UPX antenna array, which consists of 64 vertical radiating dipole antenna element pairs arranged in a circle on the ship's mast. The system uses electronic beam steering to scan all areas around the ship. The dipole antenna element pairs can produce either directional or omnidirectional beam patterns.

The system can aim its RF energy at any target of interest located at any point on the horizon within microseconds. Operators also can scan the antenna's output rapidly over a designated sector of interest. During normal surveillance operations the antenna group scans the horizon at 90 revolutions per second.

The OE-120's CV-3372/UPX antenna positioner receives commands from the C-10063/UPX controller, distributes RF power to the radiators, and digitally controls the system's output mode and boresight direction. The system's C-10063/UPX antenna controller, meanwhile, is located below decks and translates synchronized data continuously from the ship's environmental sensors.

On the OE-120 antenna contract, BAE Systems engineers will do the work in Nashua, N.H., and should be finished by May 2018. For more information contact BAE Systems Electronic Systems online at www.baesystems.com, or Naval Air Systems Command at www.navair.navy.mil.

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