ITT Exelis [XLS] said recently it completed electromagnetic compatibility testing of its Advanced Integrated Defensive Electronic Warfare Suite (AIDEWS) at Edwards AFB, Calif.
Six weeks of testing was performed on multiple radio frequency systems operating simultaneously in an F-16 carrying the AIDEWS pod. The team measured pod antenna patterns on the F-16, as well as system interoperability between the AIDEWS jamming pod, fire control radar and ALR-69 Radar Warning Receiver. The testing, part of the qualification process for Pakistan’s F-16 upgrade program, was conducted to ensure AIDEWS will work with other systems integrated into the aircraft and verify multiple systems will not interfere with one another.
AIDEWS provides pilots with situational awareness and protection against radar-based threats, including modern surface-to-air and air-to-air weapon systems.
A company spokeswoman said recently along with AIDEWS, F-16s are configured with the APG-68 Fire Control Radar (FCR), the ALR-69 Radar Warning Receiver (RWR), the ALQ-213 Electronic Warfare Management System (EWMS), the ALE-47 Countermeasure Dispensing System (CMDS) and the Link-16 Multifunctional Information Distribution System (MIDS). These systems operate within a common radio frequency (RF) bandwidth that could interfere with each other. Northrop Grumman [NOC] develops the APG-68, Raytheon [RTN] develops the ALR-69, Therma manufactures the ALQ-213, BAE Systems develops the ALE-47 and ViaSat (VSAT) produces the Link-16 MIDS.
The integration of the radar systems aboard the aircraft is driven by the careful coordination of sharing the frequency band, providing each system’s full capability, while not causing interference with one another. The testing also helps to reduce the amount of flight testing needed to verify the electronic warfare system’s performance, which reduces the cost and time to qualify a system.
The next milestone for the AIDEWS pod program is the integration flight tests, which have recently begun at Edwards AFB. These flight tests will verify the integration of the AIDEWS pod with the multiple radar systems in a more operational environment. A spokeswoman said the government is scheduled to wrap up flight tests by the end of 2013.
ITT Exelis, in a cooperative effort among the Chilean Air Force and U.S. Air Force, conducted a successful demo in a series of multi-ship F-16 missions earlier this year.