Lockheed Martin has selected Rohde & Schwarz to supply its AN/ARC-238 software-defined radio (SDR) for the latest production configuration of the F-16 aircraft.

As the preferred supplier of radio communications, Rohde & Schwarz will provide the SDR solution for installation on F-16 Block 70 aircraft for US-allied nations.

Rohde & Schwarz Avionics Market Segment vice-president Stefan Pleyer said: “The capabilities provided by our software-defined airborne radios are a game-changer for any air force that flies the F-16.

“We are proud to work with Lockheed Martin, delivering AN/ARC-238 SDRs systems for the (F-16) Block 70. The SDR’s excellent RF characteristics make it suitable for applications in military environments, including all types of airborne platforms.”

The company’s AN/ARC-238 SDR solution includes a remotely controlled transceiver installed in the avionic bay. Another transceiver controlled using a control panel is integrated into the cockpit.

The airborne radio system provides a frequency range of 30MHz to 400MHz.

To counteract eavesdropping and jamming attacks that pose a threat to military radio communications, Rohde & Schwarz’s R&S SECOS waveform integrates COMSEC and TRANSEC functionality into a single waveform.

The contract comes after Lockheed Martin awarded Rohde & Schwarz the Elite supplier status for its services to the F-16 programme.

Pleyer added: “Rohde & Schwarz is very proud to have been granted the ELITE supplier status, being recognised for our proven commitment to quality and accountability.”

The Block 70 configuration extends the structural life of the fighter aircraft by more than 50% beyond that of the previous F-16 version.