Business

September 25, 2012

Northrop Grumman completes field installations of new B-2 radar system

The B-2 Spirit of Texas takes off from Palmdale, Calif., upon completion of programmed depot maintenance June 28, 2012.

Northrop Grumman has successfully completed ahead of schedule all field installations of a new radar system for the U.S. Air Force’s fleet of B-2 stealth bombers.
Every operational B-2 is now equipped with the new radar, which was developed for the Air Force’s B-2 Radar Modernization Program. It takes advantage of technology advancements that have occurred since the bomber was originally designed in the early 1980s.

Northrop Grumman is the Air Force’s prime contractor for the B-2, the flagship of the nation’s long-range strike arsenal. The fleet of 20 B-2s is operated by the 509th Bomb Wing from its headquarters at Whiteman Air Force Base, Mo.

“Every installation of RMP hardware performed at Whiteman was completed ahead of schedule ñ on average three days early,” said Ron Naylor, director of B-2 modernization and transformation for Northrop Grumman. “We returned every one of those jets to the Air Force anywhere from one to 11 days early.”

The Whiteman RMP installs occurred in two blocks: five were completed during 2009 as part of the program’s system development and demonstration phase. Ten more were completed between the third quarter of 2010 and the first quarter of 2012 as part of the RMP production contract.

“We also beat by six days the program’s installation schedule for the B-2 Spirit of Texas, which was returned to the Air Force from the programmed depot maintenance (PDM) process in late June,” added Naylor. PDM is performed periodically on every B-2 at Northrop Grumman’s facility in Palmdale, Calif.

Northrop Grumman’s ability to consistently beat the RMP installation schedule can be attributed, in part, to its disciplined planning and execution processes, said Chad Hartmann, the company’s B-2 production program manager.

“We worked actively with the Air Force to identify and purchase long-lead items that were part of our critical production path. That approach helped us ensure a seamless production process,” he said.

Northrop Grumman also used a second advanced procurement process with RMP called a Life of Type buy. Under this approach, the company worked out agreements with the government and RMP suppliers to purchase all the spare parts needed for the anticipated operational life of the system, thereby avoiding future parts obsolescence issues.

Raytheon Space & Airborne Systems, El Segundo, Calif., developed the new radar hardware under contract to Northrop Grumman. It includes an advanced electronically scanned array antenna, a power supply and a modified receiver/exciter.

The B-2 is the only long-range, large-payload U.S. aircraft that can penetrate deeply into access-denied airspace. In concert with the Air Force’s air superiority fleet, which provides airspace control, and the Air Force’s tanker fleet, which enables global mobility, the B-2 can help protect U.S. interests anywhere in the world. It can fly more than 6,000 nautical miles unrefueled and more than 10,000 nautical miles with just one aerial refueling, giving it the ability to reach any point on the globe within hours.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Headlines September 17, 2014

News: Pentagon open to U.S. ground troops in fight against Islamic State - The Pentagon’s top general opened the door Sept. 16 to the possibility that U.S. combat troops would be needed in Iraq, as he publicly laid out President Obama’s still-developing plans to combat Islamic State insurgents through U.S. air power and relying on an...
 
 

News Briefs September 17, 2014

U.S. to assign 3,000 troops to fight Ebola The Obama administration is preparing to assign 3,000 U.S. military personnel to West Africa to combat the Ebola outbreak that has overwhelmed local health care systems and drawn appeals for help from the region and aid organizations. The troops will supply medical and logistical support and boost...
 
 
Navy photograph

Future USNS Fall River delivered

Navy photograph The joint high speed vessel USNS Fall River (JHSV 4) completes acceptance trials testing and evaluations in the Gulf of Mexico. The ship’s trials included dockside testing to clear the ship for sea and at-...
 

 
University of Alaska-Fairbanks photograph by Chris Larsen

NASA airborne campaigns focus on climate impacts in Arctic

University of Alaska-Fairbanks photograph by Chris Larsen Changes in more than 130 Alaskan glaciers are being surveyed by scientists at the University of Alaska-Fairbanks in a DHC-3 Otter as part of NASA’s multi-year Oper...
 
 
Air Force photograph by Michael J. Pausic

Future of NATO: Adapting to a new security environment

Air Force photograph by Michael J. Pausic Gen. Phillip Breedlove informs the assembled crowd about the results of the recent NATO Summit and the areas of instability that affect Europe that have regional implications. Seated in...
 
 
Image courtesy of NASA/CXC/M. Weiss

NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory finds planet that makes star act deceptively old

Image courtesy of NASA/CXC/M. Weiss A new study from NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory shows that a giant exoplanet, WASP-18b, is making the star that it orbits very closely act much older than it actually is. This artist&...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>