A Pennsylvania National Guard unit decommission the Army’s last remaining AN/TPQ-37 Firefinder Weapon Locating System during a ceremony Sept. 23 at the Carlisle Readiness Center.
Soldiers with the 1st Battalion, 108th Field Artillery Regiment, 56th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 28th Infantry Division, Pennsylvania Army National Guard, currently fields modern AN/TPQ-53 Quick Reaction Capability radars instead of AN/TPQ-37 Firefinder Weapon Locating System.
“We’re continually learning and improving and adapting to the latest technology and we’re fortunate to have wonderful Soldiers who can make great use of this technology and keep us at the forefront of the field artillery community,” said Maj. Luis Mendoza, commander of the 1st Battalion, 108th Field Artillery Regiment. “We took the Q-37 to Iraq with us and it served its purpose, but now having the Q-53 we’re light years ahead technology wise.”
These radar systems track incoming artillery and rocket fire to determine the point of origin for counter-battery fire. The Q-53 system improves upon the Q-37 by being 360 degree-capable, expeditionary, and digital.
“This is something we’ve been working on for a long time, so we’re glad that the Q-37 is finally out of the field and Soldiers have a new, upgraded capability with the Q-53,” said Lt. Col. Adrian Jasso, the Army’s product manager for radars. “It’s the basis for everything we’re going to do in the future, being a digital radar, we can continue to update it over time with critical capabilities the Soldier will need to fight future battles.”
The Q-53 has been in service since 2012, first to active duty units and now to Guard and Reserve units, and is expected to last at least 20-30 years.