Wednesday, November 28, 2007
Northrop Grumman Flight Tests B-2 Antenna
Northrop Grumman completed the installation, integration and initial flight testing of the first developmental test units (DTU) of the new radar antenna developed for the B-2 stealth bomber's radar modernization program (RMP). Northrop Grumman said the antenna –– an active electronically scanned array designed by Raytheon –– will allow the Northrop Grumman-led B-2 team to complete the RMP flight test program interrupted last year by integration issues with the antenna. Northrop Grumman is conducting the RMP flight tests on a B-2 designated AV-3 based at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif. The first flight test with the DTUs was completed on Oct. 30, and demonstrated substantially improved antenna performance, the company said. Flight testing with the new antennas will continue through early 2008. Northrop Grumman will install two production-representative radar antennas in the B-2 test aircraft early next year. These antennas –– also produced by Raytheon –– will incorporate minor hardware changes unrelated to radar performance.