Raytheon [RTN] recently said a series of laboratory tests on the Small Diameter Bomb II (SDB II) tri-mode seeker demonstrated that it exceeds anticipated performance parameters.
The SDB II’s seeker fuses millimeter-wave radar, uncooled imaging infrared (IIR) and semiactive laser sensors on a single gimbal. The result is a powerful, integrated seeker that seamlessly shares targeting information between modes, enabling the weapon to engage fixed or moving targets around-the-clock in adverse weather conditions.
“We kept SDB II affordable by designing it to meet–not exceed–government requirements. The fact that the uncooled IIR sensor surpasses design specifications is a win for the warfighter and the taxpayer,” said Harry Schulte, vice president of Air Warfare Systems for Raytheon Missile Systems. “These tests prove there’s no need to increase the cost of a tri-mode seeker by adding a cooled IIR seeker when an uncooled IIR will work just as well.”
Raytheon is currently producing integrated tri-mode seekers in the world’s only operational factory specifically designed to assemble such seekers.
“Raytheon pioneered tri-mode seeker technology, and we’re the only company that can claim its tri-mode seeker is reliable and consistently accurate,” said Tom White, Raytheon’s SDB II program director. “In addition to being effective, uncooled IIR sensors are affordable and have a reduced total life-cycle cost.”
The SDB II successfully completed a critical design review for the Air Force, a significant point for Raytheon and teammate Boeing [BA], which are competing for the Joint Air-To-Ground (JAGM) program against a Lockheed Martin [LMT] team. SBD II and JAGM share essentially the same tri-mode seeker.