Longbow, a joint venture of Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman, has secured a foreign military sale contract from the US Army to provide fire control radar (FCR) systems for the Indian Air Force (IAF).

Valued at $57.1m, the contract requires the company to produce and supply 12 FCR systems and spares for IAF’s new Apache AH-64E helicopters.

With a very low-probability of intercept, Longbow FCR can rapidly and automatically search, detect and locate multiple moving and stationary targets on land, water and in the air in all weather and battlefield conditions from standoff ranges.

The self-contained radar frequency interferometer of the system provides rapid and accurate identification of enemy air defence units.

Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control Longbow programmes president and director Jim Messina said: "With Longbow FCR, the Indian Air Force will receive a rapid all-weather targeting capability.

"With Longbow FCR, the Indian Air Force will receive a rapid all-weather targeting capability."

"The FCR’s air over-watch mode provides aircrews with 360-degree situational awareness, improving survivability and mission success."

Production of the equipment will run until early 2019 and work will be carried out at Lockheed Martin’s facilities in Orlando and Ocala, Florida, US, and at Northrop Grumman’s Baltimore facility.

High-system reliability and two-level maintenance of the FCR is said to maximise operational availability and reduce support costs.

Northrop Grumman Land and Avionics C4ISR division mission solutions vice-president Ike Song said: "Our highly reliable Longbow FCR has been repeatedly proven in combat, protecting warfighters around the globe at an affordable cost."

Image: An AH-64D Apache Longbow helicopter. Photo: courtesy of US Army / Tech. Sgt. Andy Dunaway.