EMS technologies will develop an electronically steered, switched-beam antenna for the US Air Force F-22 fighter’s multifunction advanced data link (MADL) system upgrade under a contract with Lockheed Martin.

The EMS antenna-based MADL system will extend the capabilities of the existing F-22 fleet and allow these fighters to maintain net-centric communications amongst differing types of aircraft.

The switched-beam antenna provides a low-cost alternative to a full phased-array antenna and allow the F-22 aircraft to communicate with other fighter aircraft.

The antenna does not alter the plane’s outer mould surface contours that affect the aircraft’s aerodynamic and communications characteristics.

The contract for the development of the antenna was awarded to EMS by Lockheed for a period of three years.