First Northrop Grumman MESA Sensor Installed for Royal Air Force E-7 Wedgetail AEW&C Fleet
First Northrop Grumman MESA Sensor Installed for Royal Air Force E-7 Wedgetail AEW&C Fleet

First Northrop Grumman MESA Sensor Installed for Royal Air Force E-7 Wedgetail AEW&C Fleet

Northrop Grumman Corporation’s first Multi-role Electronically Scanned Array (MESA) sensor was successfully installed on an E-7 Wedgetail Mk1 Airborne Early Warning & Control (AEW&C) aircraft for the UK’s Royal Air Force. Equipped with the MESA sensor the UK’s Wedgetail fleet will be strengthened with an airborne sensing capability at longer ranges, enabling critical early warning, surveillance and air battle management functionality. Utilizing an active production line, Northrop Grumman’s MESA sensor provides warfighters with critical domain awareness in all weather conditions.

“Northrop Grumman’s in-service, combat-proven MESA system already provides mission crews with advanced Airborne Moving Target Indication (MTI) capability to support NATO assurance missions against evolving threats. This advanced MTI will enhance UK forces’ ability to simultaneously detect, track and identify airborne and maritime adversary targets at long range, while maintaining continuous surveillance of the operational area,” said Jack Hawkins, director, MESA, Northrop Grumman.

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Royal Australian Air Force E-7A Wedgetail
Royal Australian Air Force E-7A Wedgetail equipped with the Multi-Role Electronically Scanned Array (MESA) Surveillance Radar

This powerful radar system enables tracking of airborne and maritime targets simultaneously, including the ability to revisit high profile targets at rapid rates. This modern Airborne Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) sensor provides 360-degree situational awareness and can be optimized so operators can focus on priority missions and pass relevant information to enable timely command and control decisions, and engagement of threats at long ranges. Australia, Turkey and South Korea have fielded AEW&C systems, with production underway on the second and third systems for the UK’s E-7 Wedgetail AEW&C aircraft.

Northrop Grumman Corporation recently began testing for the United Kingdom’s first MESA sensor at the company’s radar range in Linthicum, Maryland. The state of the art, combat proven MESA sensor will soon provide the Royal Air Force with a long range first look, first engagement advantage against even the most sophisticated adversaries. Northrop Grumman is a technology company, focused on global security and human discovery. The company pioneering solutions equip our customers with capabilities they need to connect, advance and protect the U.S. and its allies. Driven by a shared purpose to solve customers’ toughest problems, 90,000 employees define possible every day.

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