Navy to contract BAE Systems for IFF interrogators to identify friendly and enemy aircraft
PATUXENT RIVER NAS, Md., 29 Feb. 2016. U.S. Navy aviation experts are negotiating a contract with BAE Systems to build and upgrade identification-friend-or-foe (IFF) interrogators for surface ships and land installations to help identify friendly and potentially hostile aircraft.
Officials of the Naval Air Systems Command at Patuxent River Naval Air Station, Md., announced a plan Friday to negotiate a sole-source contract with the BAE Systems Electronic Systems segment in Greenlawn, N.Y., for new IFF interrogators, as well as for equipment to upgrade fielded AN/UPX-37 and AN/UPX-41(C) digital interrogator units.
An IFF digital interrogator is part of a Navy shipboard air traffic control system, and looks at signals from the transponders of nearby aircraft to identify them on air traffic control radar, and to determine if the aircraft are friendly or potential threats.
Navy officials are asking BAE Systems for AN/UPX-41(C) digital interrogator production units; Mode 5 change kits to upgrade fielded AN/UPX-37 digital interrogator units to the AN/UPX-41(C) configuration; and Mode S change kits to upgrade fielded AN/UPX-41(C) digital interrogator units to the AN/UPX-45(C) configuration.
The contract also will be for technical and logistics support. The value of the upcoming contract has yet to be negotiated.
The base contract will involve about 32 AN/UPX-41(C) digital interrogators; 25 Mode 5 change kits; eight Mode S change kits; and logistics support.
Options for fiscal years 2018 will involve about 25 AN/UPX-41 (C) digital interrogator production units; 27 Mode 5 change kits; 10 Mode S change kits; and logistics support; Fiscal 2019 options will involve about 18 AN//UPX-41(C) digital interrogator production units, eight Mode 5 change kits, 30 S change kits; and logistics support.
The AN/UPX-41(C) digital IFF interrogator is the U.S. Navy’s standard mode 5 level 1 and level 2 interrogator. The U.S. Marine Corps and Air Force also use it for several applications. The interrogator handles Mark XII and Mark XIIA IFF processing, including mode 5, with growth to mode S.
The unit conforms to U.S. Department of Defense (DOD), NATO, International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), and U.S. FAA requirements. Its design represents an upgrade to the AN/UPX-37, which replaces all AN/UPX-27 IFF interrogators in the fleet, BAE Systems officials say.
The AN/UPX-41(C) modular and digital architecture enables users to customize different configurations, and to optimize the unit for applications such as air defense, weapon systems, air traffic control, and range instrumentation.
The unit can provide digital target reports in addition to wideband video for subsequent passive and active decoding. The digital interrogator also provides amplitude monopulse for enhanced azimuth accuracy, and can operate autonomously or together with a host radar.
The interrogator uses a VME backplane and circuit boards, and has embedded M4/M5 NSA-certified cryptography, built-in test (BIT), and growth for mode S and target data extractor functions. Its mean time between failures exceeds 4,000 hours, BAE Systems officials say, and the unit meets MIL-STD-461D, DoDAIMS 03-1000A, and STANAG 4193.
The AN/UPX-41(C) can interrogate the transponders of aircraft as far away as 300 miles, and can interrogate as many as 1,000 aircraft per scan and 100 aircraft in each search beam. The unit measures 14.75 by 10.56 by 18 inches, and weighs as much as 80 pounds.
It operates in temperatures from -28 to 65 degrees Celsius, and resists the effects of salt fog, humidity, and electromagnetic interference.
Companies interested in subcontracting opportunities should contact Abraham Leidner of BAE Systems by email at Abe.Leidner@baesystems.com, or by phone at 631-262-8204.