Northrop Grumman plans to market its improved APG-66(V) multi-mode radar as a standalone upgrade as well as part of Lockheed Martin's F-16A/B mid-life update (MLU).

The radar-only upgrade will cost less than $600,000 and provide 25% more range and 50% better reliability, says Thomas Lupica, director APG-66/68 programmes.

Without the other elements, the aircraft would not have the MLU F-16's capability to carry the AIM-120 Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air Missile, but the low-cost radar upgrade would improve situational awareness and ground mapping, he says.

The US company is producing 300 upgrade kits as part of the MLU programme and has also signed a contract with Portugal.

Northrop Grumman is also targeting its improved APG-68(V)X radar for new and upgraded F-16C/Ds. The radar is being developed for the latest Block 50+ F-16s sold to Greece and it is on offer to Israel and Norway.

Lupica says the APG-68(V)X introduces a synthetic aperture radar ground imaging capability for precision attack and doubles reliability. The company sees a market to supply APG-68(V)X radars for 250-300 new and 1,000 upgraded F-16s. The active array Agile Beam Radar planned for the advanced Block 60 F-16 "is not a retrofit candidate", he says.

Source: Flight International