U.S. weapons maker Northrop Grumman Corp has announced on 13 May that in partnership with the United States Marine Corps, recently passed a successful Initial Operational Test and Evaluation (IOT&E) for the AN/TPS-80 Ground/Air Task-Oriented Radar (G/ATOR) Blocks 1 and 2.
The AN/TPS-80 G/ATOR is a highly expeditionary, three-dimensional, short-to-medium-range multi-role radar that will replace several legacy and retired systems such as the AN/TPS-63. The difference will be easy hardware/software replacement, the capability for elevation tracking and assisting the AN/TPS-59A(V)3 Long-Range Radar in filling in gaps in radar resolution.
Northrop Grumman’s AN/TPS-80 G/ATOR is an advanced, multi-mission Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar that provides comprehensive real time, 360 degree situational awareness.
The G/ATOR will interface with a Common Aviation Command and Control System and Composite Tracking Network in an expeditionary environment and will allow Marine Air-Ground Task Force commanders to better prepare via situational awareness and targeting data.
IOT&E is a rigorous phase of testing that a new system undergoes to determine that it is operationally effective and suitable for fleet introduction. The milestone demonstrates viability and suitability of the system, and completion indicates the Marine Corps is ready to operate and field G/ATOR Blocks 1 and 2 in their current configuration. The commitment of both the Marine Corps and G/ATOR team to deliver an operationally effective, 360-degree AESA radar system will ensure our warfighters can detect – and take action against – complex, modern threats.
“Through our close partnership with the Marine Corps, we have been able to successfully achieve the IOT&E milestone and begin fielding this radar system with unrivaled mission capability to operational units,” said Christine Harbison, vice president, land and avionics C4ISR, Northrop Grumman. “We are proud to deliver hardware enabled, software defined advanced ground radar systems that meet our customer’s mission needs, protect the warfighter in a rapidly changing threat environment, and have significant margin for capability growth.”
To date, eight production systems have been delivered to the Marine Corps. In early 2017, Northrop Grumman delivered six low rate initial production systems. The first Gallium Nitride systems were delivered ahead of schedule in July 2018 and were used for development test (DT) 1E1, DT1E2 and IOT&E.