The Northrop Grumman MQ-8B Fire Scout will deploy next year with a new maritime surveillance radar that can track up to 200 targets beyond 15nm (27.8km).
The Telephonics RDR-1700B – redesignated by the US Navy as the ZPY-4(V)1 – provides a broad area search and track on the Fire Scout for the first time.
The new radar “complements Fire Scout's other sensors and systems to provide the Navy with increased visibility far beyond the horizon”, says George Vardoulakis, Northrop’s vice-president for medium range tactical systems.
The MQ-8B will deploy with the ZPY-4(V)1 on the next deployment of the Freedom-class littoral combat ship USS Fort Worth in early 2015, according to Telephonics.
The demonstration on 7 May comes more than 17 months after Northrop selected Telephonics to supply the new radar in January 2013.
Telephonics, a Griffon subsidiary, describes the radar as an X-Band radar with a 15nm detection range of a 1-square-meter detection range in up to sea state 3 conditions.
The radar can operate in four different modes: surface search, terrain mapping, emergency beacon detection and wea
ther avoidance, according to Telephonics. It can operate in both inverse and normal synthetic aperture modes.
Though highly capable, the radar is relatively lightweight at 34kg (75lb).