Lockheed Martin has been awarded a pre-engineering and manufacturing development (pre-EMD) phase contract as part of the US Air Force's (USAF) Three Dimensional Expeditionary Long Range Radar (3DELRR) programme.
Under the $36m contract, the company will assist the USAF in reviewing industry trade studies, establishing final radar requirements, and conducting preliminary design reviews (PDRs). Lockheed will also demonstrate radar system-level technology maturity.
The 15-month phase contract is expected to be followed by engineering and manufacturing development (EMD) and low-rate production (LRIP) phase contracts.
Mark Mekker, Lockheed Martin Mission Systems & Sensors business ground-based surveillance radar director, said the 3DELRR will provide commanders with adequate response time for detection and prosecution of evolving threats in the battlefield.
''Our 3DELRR technology is mature, focused on not just performing now, but evolving and extending system life as required,'' Mekker added.
Lockheed, which currently operates 178 long-range radars worldwide, received a $25m, 20-month 3DELRR technology development (TD) phase contract from the air force in May 2009.
A functioning full-scale system prototype was launched by the company as proof of the radar's maturity in December 2010, which met 100% of the 3DELRR demands, such as critical extended air surveillance reach for early warning from threats including aircraft and ballistic missiles.
Work under the contract is scheduled to be carried out at the company's facilities in Syracuse, New York, and Moorestown, New Jersey, US.
Designed to replace the USAF's currently used AN/TPS-75 radar, the 3DELRR will be the principal long-range, ground-based sensor for detecting, identifying, tracking, and reporting aircraft and missiles at extended ranges in support of theatre commanders.
Northrop Grumman and Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems (IDS) were also awarded $37.4m and $35.1m pre-EMD contracts, respectively.
Image: The 3DELRR is expected to help USAF in detection, identification, tracking, and reporting of aerial targets. Photo: courtesy of Lockheed Martin Corporation ©.