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Northrop Grumman successfully SABR Fit-Checks an F-16 at Edwards AFB

July 23, 2009 (by Asif Shamim) - Northrop Grumman Corporation's newest active electronically scanned array (AESA) fighter sensor, the Scalable Agile Beam Radar (SABR), has been successfully installed on a F-16 at Edwards Air Force Base.

The Scalable Agile Beam Radar (SABR) from Northrop Grumman will be a full performance fire control Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) derived from proven AESA technology for F-16 aircraft. [Northrop Grumman photo]

In November, SABR began a series of flight demonstrations aboard the company's test aircraft, successfully detecting and displaying multiple aerial targets and generating high resolution Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) ground maps.

"The fit-check completed on June 29, is another important milestone leading up to a planned F-16 flight demonstration later this year," said Arlene Camp, director of Advanced F-16 Radar Programs at Northrop Grumman's Aerospace Systems Division. "Installation took less than five hours and assessed SABR's design goals to integrate seamlessly within existing F-16 Block 50/52 physical constraints for interface to aircraft power, cooling, and avionics."

The aircraft was returned to original configuration after the installation evaluation.

"Northrop Grumman is the sole provider of radars for the F-16 and for over 30 years has continually improved the F-16 radar's performance and reliability. SABR is Northrop Grumman's latest investment towards enhancing and sustaining the F-16's combat capability for decades to come," added Camp.

Although designed specifically for the F-16, SABR is scalable and adaptable to other platforms and missions. In comparison to the mechanically-scanned array radars it is designed to replace, the new radar will provide increased performance, multi-functionality and greater reliability.

With a greater detection and tracking range, high-resolution SAR maps, and interleaved mode operations it will provide pilots with better situational awareness and all-environment precision strike capability.

Courtesy of Northrop Grumman

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