Navy asks L3Harris to build tactical networking avionics for E-2D aircraft to blend sensors and weapons

Nov. 3, 2022
The CEC is a tactical sensors and weapons network for anti-air warfare that combines information from sensors operating over large geographic areas.

WASHINGTON – U.S. Navy anti-air warfare experts needed an electronics manufacturer to build sensors and weapons tactical networking terminals for the carrier-based E-2C and E-2D airborne early warning aircraft. They found their solution from the L3Harris Technologies C5 Integrated Systems segment in Camden, N.J.

Officials of the Naval Sea Systems Command in Washington announced an $41 million order to L3Harris to build AN/USG-3B Cooperative Engagement Capability (CEC) avionics sets for E-2C and E-2D military aircraft.

The CEC is a tactical sensor and weapons network for anti-air warfare that combines information from sensors operating over broadly distributed geographic areas in a common tactical picture for battle groups at sea. It improves overall situational awareness, and enables fleet commanders to work closely together to attack enemy forces from long ranges.

The order includes CEC spare parts, signal data processors, AN/USG-3B systems, stock point operation and program support, engineering studies and analyses, configuration, obsolescence, and technical data management, and technical data package.

Related: Navy orders targeting network embedded computing avionics system for attack jets from Boeing and L3Harris

The AN/USG-3 is the airborne designation of CEC deployed in E-2C and E-2D aircraft. Other CEC terminals are aboard Navy surface warships; U.S. Marine Corps command posts, aviation command-and-control centers, and surveillance aerostats.

CEC blends sensors and weapons into an integrated real-time network that expands the battlespace; enhances situational awareness; increases depth of fire; enables long intercept ranges; and improves decision and reaction times.

It extracts and distributes sensor information such that the superset of this data is available to all participating CEC-equipped units by fusing the distributed data from shipboard, airborne, composite tracking network ground-mobile units, Joint Land Attack Cruise Missile Defense Elevated Netted Sensor System (JLENS), and coalition partners into one fire-control-quality air track picture.

Related: CACI joins project for networking software to connect sensors and weapons in new brand of mosaic warfare

The system uses line-of-sight data distribution to share radar-measurement data among sensors and weapons to create one distributed integrated air picture. It combines surveillance and targeting information such that the combined system is greater than the sum of its parts.

The jam-resistant CEC obtains target track information to form one real-time composite track to help coordinate theater air and missile defense to engage incoming cruise missiles.

On this order L3Harris will do the work in Largo, Fla.; Menlo Park, Calif.; Lititz, Pa.; and Salt Lake City, and should be finished by October 2024. For more information contact L3Harris Technologies online at, or Naval Sea Systems Command at

About the Author

John Keller | Editor-in-Chief

John Keller is the Editor-in-Chief, Military & Aerospace Electronics Magazine--provides extensive coverage and analysis of enabling electronics and optoelectronic technologies in military, space and commercial aviation applications. John has been a member of the Military & Aerospace Electronics staff since 1989 and chief editor since 1995.

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