The USAF has contracted Northrop for full-rate production of radar systems for the B-2 stealth bomber fleet under the company's radar modernisation programme (RMP).
Under the programme, the aircraft's original radar system will be replaced with one that incorporates technology improvements.
Following the authorisation, Northrop will begin fabrication of the balance of radar units needed to outfit the entire fleet.
The new radar hardware, which includes a new advanced electronically scanned array antenna, a power supply and a modified receiver / exciter have been developed by Raytheon Space & Airborne Systems, under a contract with Northrop Grumman.
Northrop Grumman B-2 vice-president and programme manager Dave Mazur said that putting this new radar on America's flight line would help ensure that the B-2 fleet was ready to protect the nation's interests worldwide, day or night.
"The new radar also makes it easier for our modernization team to add additional mission
capabilities to the jet in the future," Mazur said.
These units will be produced as part of the final installment of the $468m RMP contract awarded to the company by the air force in December 2008.
The B-2, which combines stealth, long range, large payload and precision weapons in a single platform, ensures an effective US response to threats anywhere in the world.
The aircraft can fly over 6,000nm unrefuelled and more than 10,000nm with just one aerial refuelling.