Northrop Grumman is to demonstrate the networking of a Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System (JSTARS) and a surrogate Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) radar as part of the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency's (DARPA's) Affordable Moving Surface Target Engagement (AMSTE) project.

Late last year DARPA and the US Air Force selected Northrop Grumman and Raytheon for $12 million and $11 million contracts respectively to continue AMSTE development.

During the tests, set for later this year, Northrop Grumman will network its Active Electrically Scanned Array multimode radar, developed for Lockheed Martin's JSF candidate, with a JSTARS to provide precision tracks to a Lockheed Martin-supplied guided weapon aimed at a moving ground target. Alphatech and Orincon - which have previously won contracts to develop precision fire control tracking algorithms - are also on Northrop Grumman's team.

Ultimately, AMSTE should allow the networking of multiple sensors and weapons to target high-value, mobile ground assets such as ballistic missile launchers and surface-to-air missile systems.

Northrop Grumman discloses that it will build an experimental AMSTE system that will network airborne ground moving target indication sensors to continuously and precisely track moving ground targets, using low-cost precision strike weapons to engage them.

Source: Flight International