Northrop Grumman Introduces Upgraded AN/APG-68(V)XM Fire Control Radar System

Falls Church, Virginia, UNITED STATES


BALTIMORE, Md., May 25, 2000 (PRIMEZONE) -- Northrop Grumman Corporation's (NYSE:NOC) Electronic Sensors and Systems Sector (ES3) has announced the launch of a major upgrade to its fire control radar system for the Lockheed Martin F-16 C/D fighter aircraft.

Designated the AN/APG-68(V)XM, the modified radar is being developed, under contract to Lockheed Martin, for new F-16 C/D aircraft scheduled for delivery beginning in 2002.

"The updated radar will incorporate a high-resolution synthetic aperture radar capability to enable significantly increased accuracy in targeting enemy ground targets under all-weather conditions," said George Perry, director-F-16 radar programs at Northrop Grumman ES3.

Mr. Perry added that the AN/APG-68(V)XM will feature improved detection range performance in air combat, plus twice the reliability of what is already the world's most reliable fire control radar at a purchase price comparable to predecessor versions. Among other enhancements, the upgrade includes replacing the existing radar's computers and receivers with more modern commercial equivalents.

"The AN/APG-68(V)XM will be among the world's most economical radars to own and maintain," Mr. Perry said. "Since the introduction of Northrop Grumman's F-16 radar family in the mid-1970's, continued reliability improvement has been a cornerstone of the radar's success. The increased reliability of the AN/APG-68(V)XM will dramatically reduce its cost of ownership."

The updated radar will be available to customers for new F-16 C/D's and as a retrofit kit for existing F-16's.

"By upgrading the current inventory of AN/APG-68's in its fleet to this new configuration, a country will be able to realize even greater ownership cost savings across its radar operations through common intermediate and depot test equipment, training and logistics support," Mr. Perry added. "The resulting return in sustainment cost reduction could more than pay for the initial kit purchase."

With more than 6,000 produced, the AN/APG-68 and its predecessor, the AN/APG-66, are two of the most successful fire control radars ever built. In addition to the U.S. Air Force, the AN/APG-68 is operated by the air forces of South Korea, Israel, Egypt, Singapore, Greece, Turkey and Bahrain. The AN/APG-68 is the first multi-mode, high-performance fighter radar to demonstrate a mean time between failure of more than 200 hours in the field.

Northrop Grumman's Electronic Sensors and Systems Sector, headquartered in Baltimore, is a world leader in the design, development and manufacture of defense electronics and systems, precision weapons, airspace management systems, space systems, marine systems, and automation and information systems.

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