Beyond F-35: Forbes & Greenert on Cyber, Drones & Ca

Cockpit, radar, helmet-mounted display, and other avionics
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Unread post29 Apr 2013, 21:54

Beyond F-35: Rep. Forbes & Adm. Greenert on Cyber, Drones & Carriers 29 Apr 2013 Sydney J. Freedberg Jr.
"...Jamming, Cyber, and the Great Convergence
The third leg of the future carrier aircraft trifecta, alongside manned fighters and armed drones, is electronic and cyber warfare to cripple enemy radars, radios, and networks. "Electronic attack is huge," said Greenert, who's written extensively on the subject (including for this website), in testimony before Forbes and his HASC colleagues. "[It's] a major, major part of the air wing of the future, air warfare of the future, [all] warfare of the future, including cyber."

"The electromagnetic spectrum, to me, is somewhere that we have fallen behind," said Greenert. The US chose to under-invest in jamming in the 1990s "because we had no equal in that arena, and we were unchallenged. Well, we're challenged today."

The Air Force retired its last dedicated jamming aircraft over a decade ago, preferring to rely on stealth and on jamming pods for non-stealthy planes. The Navy and Marines, however, retained their seventies-vintage EA-6B Prowlers, which handle jamming for all the services. The Navy -- but not the Marines -- is now buying a new dedicated electronic attack plane, the EA-18G Growler, to replace the geriatric Prowler.

"It's out of Schlitz," Gen. James Amos, the Marine Corps Commandant, said of the Prowler in testimony to the House Armed Services Committee. In the near term, as Prowlers retire, the Marines are adding ground-based electronic warfare systems to help fill the gap, he said, "but I think the real replacement for us is the F-35B." The Marines will develop an electronic warfare pod to augment their F-35s, Amos said, but even without such additional equipment -- just using the plane's standard built-in systems -- an F-35B "has about, probably, 85 percent" of the capability of the latest Prowler.

The problem with that plan is that the Marines retire their last Prowler in 2019, while the F-35B squadrons are still building up.

"As we look forward to the F-35 coming into the inventory, there are a lot of capabilities we'll be able to leverage... to offset the sundowning of the Prowlers," said Marine Lt. Gen. Richard Tryon, Amos's deputy commandant for plans, policies, and operations, at the Navy League's Sea-Air-Space Symposium earlier this month.

"To be honest with you, I'm not as comfortable" with that approach, said Adm. William Gortney, who heads the Navy's Fleet Forces Command, minutes later at the same event. "Controlling the [electromagnetic] spectrum is something we haven't looked hard enough at in the last decade of war," he said. "The question is, are we going to have enough capacity." With the Prowlers going away and the F-35s still coming in, the Navy's Growler squadrons will have to carry almost the entire burden of aerial jamming, not just for the Navy, but for all the armed services....

...Today, for example, carriers all deploy with a standard air wing, but that may not be adequate in the future. "It may very well be we have to look regionally and say we need different mixes in different portions of the world," Forbes went on. A task force sailing to a low-threat region might make do with more Super Hornets, for example. One facing sophisticated anti-aircraft defenses might need more stealthy F-35Cs and radar-jamming EA-18Gs. One up against long-range anti-ship missiles might rely mainly on equally long-ranged UCLASS drones. And against the most sophisticated threats, the Navy might hold the carriers back and rely on missiles and drones launched from submarines...."

http://defense.aol.com/2013/04/29/beyon ... -and-carr/
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Unread post29 Apr 2013, 23:29

The F-35B wont have the high output power or the L-band jamming capability of a dedicated ALQ-99 carried on the EA-6B or EA-18 pylon. It is possible that one or more NGJ pods will integrate with the on-board ASQ-239 and provide effective escort EA capability.

From Wikipedia.
The AN/ALQ-99 has a maximum power output of 10.8 kW in its older versions and of 6.8 kW in its newer versions. It uses a ram air turbine to supply its own power.

That would likely exceed the transmit power of the APG-81 at peak transmit power.
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Unread post29 Apr 2013, 23:43

Keep in mind that the ALQ-99s are Horn type transmitters that cover a large area of the earth so the jamming energy covers a large area for any given kW of power.

An AESA transmitter, OTOH, focuses it's energy on a very small spot and would likely have a greater kW per sq meter influance than the ALQ-99, even if it used 1/10th the power.
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Unread post30 Apr 2013, 00:18

MALD-J fills the niche for stand-in jamming to complement the F-35 onboard systems.

http://m.washingtonexaminer.com/rebecca ... h/url?sa=t

Rebecca Grant: A skinny decoy the Navy should learn to love

Rebecca Grant April 13, 2013

Pentagon officials will be shaving $43 billion from the defense budget before the end of September. We all know it's time for the Pentagon to tighten the belt. The problem is that cinching up on this scale could squeeze out programs that are healthy and vital to future military operations. One program at risk is a slender, nine-foot, 280-pound object called the Miniature Air-Launched Decoy, or MALD for short. You probably haven't heard of MALD, but if you were a fighter pilot, you'd fall instantly in love with the skinny tube because it's actually a state-of-the-art unmanned aircraft decoy.

The idea behind MALD is to trick enemy air defense systems into targeting the decoys, protecting the real jets and their pilots. The MALD tucks under the wings of your jet.

You launch it over bad-guy land, and it flies ahead, sending out emissions to mimic the maneuvers of a combat jet. Not the one you are in -- a phantom, created by the MALD and its buddies, to spoof and attract enemy air defense shots so you don't get hit.

The MALD concept has already seen action. An earlier towed decoy helped protect B-1 bombers during combat missions over Kosovo and Serbia in 1999.

The Air Force is convinced. It took delivery of its first MALD-Js last year. The Navy started its program to integrate the MALD-J decoys into its fleet of "Super Hornets" aircraft last year, too.

Then came the sequester. Trying to make the budget numbers, some in the Navy have talked about halting MALD to wait on other advanced radar-jamming technologies in development.

That would be a shame. MALD adds a uniquely effective layer of protection for combat fighters via stand-in jamming electronic attack. That's a tough, dangerous mission, and the crews doing it deserve every bit of technological help they can get. MALD is not duplicative -- it's ready now and will work fine with any current and future radar-jamming technologies.

Besides, the savings aren't worth it. Each individual MALD-J unit costs about $380,000. Pricey? Actually, no. Consider that the jet fighters carrying MALD cost upwards of $75 million to replace -- and that's not considering the pilot.

Looking ahead, it's hard to see why aircraft responding to hot spots should have to do without MALD. It's especially important that the Navy's carriers -- which pride themselves on being called to the scene of the action -- should have MALD.

A newer version of the technology -- dubbed MALD-J -- comes equipped with radar-jamming capabilities to extend the offensive potential of these decoys. You can bet combat aircraft on alert near Korea or in future Pacific scenarios would be plenty glad to get help from MALD.

MALD serves an essential function in the anti-access environment. If policymakers are looking to cut costs, there are plenty of other options. The larger issue is whether in this silly season the Pentagon is going to start cutting programs and end up weakening national security strategy. On strategic and tactical criteria, MALD is one to preserve.
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Unread post30 Apr 2013, 04:05

USMC won't have the money to spend on developing a new Corps pod for F-35. Not in the near term. Amos is simply positioning. A dedicated USMC pod is not going to receive funding for another decade. Besides, in a pinch we should if joint relations hold up be able to buy the technology from Israel. They'll deliver at a cheaper price point and it will actually work on the platform early-on. I sincerely wish we could go concept to field as rapidly as they do though granted we have a broader problem set to address. 0.02
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Unread post30 Apr 2013, 20:02

velocityvector wrote:USMC won't have the money to spend on developing a new Corps pod for F-35. Not in the near term. Amos is simply positioning. A dedicated USMC pod is not going to receive funding for another decade. Besides, in a pinch we should if joint relations hold up be able to buy the technology from Israel. They'll deliver at a cheaper price point and it will actually work on the platform early-on. I sincerely wish we could go concept to field as rapidly as they do though granted we have a broader problem set to address. 0.02


Their F/A-18s and AV-8Bs carry the Intrepid Tiger pod anyway - and maybe their rotors too. Interesting that Amos says that ground units can fill in the gaps for now. Both of these insights imply comms jamming vs. EA of air defenses.
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Unread post30 Apr 2013, 20:11

Airborne Electronic Attack Efforts Gain Momentum By Robert Wall June 04, 2012
“...Another shift in communications jamming is taking place in the U.S. Marine Corps. Late last month the service was on the verge of deploying its ALQ-231(V)1 Intrepid Tiger II electronic attack pod, an in-house development to equip Harriers with a communications-jamming capability. The technology is supposed to be an even more effective communications jammer than the USQ-113 operational on the service's EA-6B.

The pod has several modes. In one, the pilot can operate a set program but—more critical—in networked mode, troops on the ground can selectively jam particular bands. Unlike some of the broadband jamming now taking place, Intrepid Tiger II is to provide a precision electronic strike capability, says Lt. Col. Jason Schuette, head of the EW branch at the Marine Corps' Combat Development and Integration Command.

Signals intelligence personnel also can monitor the effect of jamming on an adversary and, potentially, make changes to reflect tactical realities. Uploading new jamming techniques may also be possible.

To minimize the need for integration, the Harrier treats the pod as a Maverick missile, with no changes to the operational flight program required.
Further developments are already underway, and upgrades to the current system will incorporate an electronic surveillance capability. Furthermore, Intrepid Tiger II Version 2 will be a two-pod configuration that will be carried on the RQ-9 Shadow UAV. The system will have 100% of the same software and 85% of the same hardware as the Harrier model, to reduce cost.

So far, the price tag for eight pods has been around $8 million. The Marines also have adopted an unusual development approach, acting as an integrator and working on an open-systems design where hardware components can easily be replaced when more capable or reliable ones become available. The work has been done at the Naval Air Warfare Center Weapons Div., Point Mugu, Calif.

Integration on the F-35 is also being considered. Intrepid Tiger II and its follow-ons should give the Marines long-term electronic attack capabilities even after the EA-6B is retired in 2019.

In the meantime, the U.S. Air Force is crafting a plan to deal with its long-term electronic attack needs. The service believes it can fly the EC-130H for another two decades, but is likely to kick off an analysis of alternatives around 2015 to set long-term priorities.

For the Navy, much of the focus will be on the Next Generation Jammer (NGJ). The service expects to release a request for proposals for the hotly contested program this month, with bids due two months later. BAE Systems, ITT Exelis, Northrop Grumman and Raytheon are the likely bidders for the technology development effort. Navy officials warn that the NGJ challenges are formidable. For industry, the stakes are also high with the losers in the competition facing questions over how to sustain key electronic warfare skills given the dearth of other programs to bid on.”

http://www.aviationweek.com/awmobile/Ar ... 84.xml&p=2
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Unread post30 Apr 2013, 20:15

Already speculated upon in other threads but reminder posted here [put your upgraded 'Intrepid Tiger II' here:

F-35 Multi Mission Pod on Display TERMA 2012-07-10:
"...The F-35 Pod Enclosure will provide real estate on the F-35, which can be used to expand the F-35 Special Mission functionality, by allowing the F-35 to fly Next Generation EW and ISR systems, such as Jammers and EO sensors...."

http://www.terma.com/press/news-2012/f- ... n-display/

http://www.terma.com/media/199994/img_8360_464.png
_____________________

Perhaps an upgraded 'Intrepid Tiger II' will be carried by USMC F-35Bs?

Yuma hosts first flight for new electronic warfare system 09 April 2012
Marine Corps Air Station Yuma Story by Lance Cpl. Sean Dennison
“Intrepid Tiger II, a government-built system whose ground work began in 2008, is meant to expand the circumference of electronic warfare capabilities. The pod will provide AV-8B Harriers with an electronic attack capability, expanding their utility on the modern battlefield and paving the way for the Marine Air-Ground Task Force electronic warfare concept that will replace the Prowlers....

...The new pod’s strength lies in its versatility, being controlled by either airborne pilots or ground radio operators. First Radio Battalion, based in Camp Pendleton, Calif., is the first ground-based unit trained to use Intrepid Tiger II.... ...Radio operators can assume control of the pod depending on ground activity if the situation does not cover pilots’ mission preplanning. “This is our first foray into a network centric, system of systems with electronic war-fare capabilities,” said Maj. William Maples, the Headquarters Marine Corps Harrier weapons system requirement officer and a native of Murfreesboro, Tenn. “We’re excited to see the effect it will have to unify combatant commanders in Operation Enduring Freedom.”... ...As Harriers are used primarily for providing close-air support to ground troops, the Harrier community already has an established rap-port with their land-based brethren....

...Harriers also already deploy with Marine Expeditionary Units, making them ideal for the first platform to use the pod. Plans are in the works to bestow Intrepid Tiger II on other platforms, including F/A-18 Hornets, rotary-wing aircraft & unmanned aerial vehicles. The variety of platforms is important, as the Prowlers, Hornets & Harriers slowly make way for the Joint Strike Fighter program....

...“The most important part of this asset is it’s organic to the Corps,” added 1st Lt. David Miller, a 1st Radio Battalion and a native of Chilliocothe, Ohio, noting that ground troops now have a Corps-exclusive electronic warfare capability....”


http://d1.static.dvidshub.net/media/thu ... 99_q75.jpg

CAPTION: "Personnel assemble the Intrepid Tiger II electronic warfare pod at MCAS Yuma, March 26 [2012]."

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Unread post30 Apr 2013, 20:35

ALQ-231 Intrepid Tiger Pod

http://www.navair.navy.mil/index.cfm?fu ... 5BE59B02F3

"Description:
The Intrepid Tiger II (IT II) is a precision Electronic Warfare (EW) pod designed to provide U.S.Marine Corps fixed, and rotary wing aircraft with a distributed, adaptable and net-centric Airborne Electronic Attack (AEA) capability that can be controlled from the cockpit or by a ground operator.

An open architecture design and rapid reprogrammability will give IT II the flexibility and adaptability to meet current and future threats.

IT II will be the first deployable hardware in support of the Marine Air Ground Task Force EW 2020 vision of a distributed, networked approach to EW that is designed to meet warfighter demand for Electronic Attack (EA) with both capability and capacity."

http://www.navair.navy.mil/img/uploads/ ... %20CC2.JPG

CAPTION: The Intrepid Tiger II (IT II) is a precision Electronic Warfare (EW) pod designed to provide U.S.Marine Corps fixed, and rotary wing aircraft with a distributed, adaptable and net-centric Airborne Electronic Attack (AEA) capability that can be controlled from the cockpit or by a ground operator."

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Unread post30 Apr 2013, 20:44

NGJ For the possible future....

http://www.navair.navy.mil/img/uploads/ ... cept_2.JPG

CAPTION: "The Next Generation Jammer (NGJ) system is intended to replace the ALQ-99 Tactical Jamming System (TJS) carried on EA-18G aircraft and improve the Airborne Electronic Attack (AEA) capability to address the many diverse and rapidly changing threats on the electronic battlefield."

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Unread post07 May 2013, 04:51

STRIKE TEST NEWS Air Test and Evaluation Squadron 23 Newsletter 2012 Issue
UPCOMING PROJECTS... [page 8]
"...The USMC has asked for integration of the Intrepid Tiger II (IT II) Pod on their F/A-18C/D aircraft. The IT II Pod is a tactical communications jammer used to provide offensive and defensive airborne electronic combat mission support. This system is designed to be operational on many military fixed-wing aircraft. VX-23 expects to conduct ground and flight test to clear the IT II Pod for carriage on stations 2 and 8 on the Hornet beginning in the fall of 2012."

http://www.navair.navy.mil/nawcad/index ... oad&id=670 (PDF 2.1Mb)
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Unread post09 Jul 2013, 10:56

Raytheon awarded NGJ tech development contract 08 Jul 2013 Dave Majumdar
"The US Navy awarded Raytheon a $279.4 million contract for the technology development (TD) phase of the service's Next Generation Jammer (NGJ) programme on 8 July, the service says.

The Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR), which administers the effort to build the new jammer pod, says that the new system will "transform how the service executes its airborne electronic attack (AEA) mission."

Raytheon expressed its delight at being selected for the contract, but offered little in the way of details. "We couldn't be more pleased with the customer's selection of our NGJ offering," the company says. "The Raytheon team worked diligently to put forth an innovative, next generation solution that meets current customer requirements and potential future needs."

Raytheon was picked for the TD phase after a 33-month technology maturation period where four contractors developed and matured "several critical technologies" key to the NGJ programme. Originally, the USN had hoped to award two TD contracts, but those plans appear to have been scrapped in favour of a single contractor.

According to NAVAIR, the 22-month long TD phase will integrate the various components of the jammer into "testable subsystems". Additionally, Raytheon will have to complete the preliminary design of the NGJ pods before the USN moves onto the follow-on engineering and manufacturing development phase. "Keys to success include demonstrations of required capabilities as well as crafting a design that will be tested and flown on the [Boeing EA-18G] Growler during the subsequent 4½ year engineering and manufacturing development phase," NAVAIR says.

The NGJs are set to replace the existing ALQ-99 jammer pods carried onboard the USN's fleet of EA-18Gs starting in fiscal year 2020. The new jammer, which utilizes active electronically scanned array antenna and Gallium Nitride-based transmit/receive modules, offers far greater capability than the obsolescent ALQ-99 mid-band pods. The venerable ALQ-99 pods are already hard-pressed to defeat the latest threat systems.

However, the ALQ-99 low-band pods, which are relatively new, will be retained for the foreseeable future. Nor are there any immediate plans to develop a new high-band pod."

http://www.flightglobal.com/blogs/the-d ... -deve.html
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