JED - July 2014 - 42

The Journal of Electronic Defense | July 2014

42

Readiness Level (TRL) 6, the Air Force
made the Integrated Demonstrations
and Applications Laboratory (IDAL)
of the Air Force Research Laboratory
(AFRL) Sensors Directorate at WrightPatterson AFB, OH available for Hardware In the Loop (HWIL) demonstrations
to potential F-15 EPAWSS suppliers. The
demonstrations will be used to gather
performance data for characterizing
system maturity and readiness levels
and to inform development of program
plans to address risk during EMD.
Beyond the evolving EW threat environment, an additional factor driving
the need and development schedule for
EPAWSS is that the Air Force is equipping its F-15C and F-15E aircraft with
advanced AESA radars, which will not
be compatible with the aircrafts' current, older-generation RWR and jammer technology. F-15C aircraft are being
equipped with Raytheon's AN/APG63(V)3 AESA radar, while the AN/APG70 pulse-Doppler radar on the F-15E is
being replaced with the Raytheon AN/
APG-82(V)1 AESA radar, which provides
extended range and improved multitarget track and precision engagement
capabilities, as well as improved situational awareness. The system combines
back-end processing electronics from
the Raytheon APG-79 AESA radar now in
use on US Navy F-18 aircraft with the
AESA antenna array of the APG-63(V)3.
Currently, the F-15E Radar Modernization Program (RMP) is in low rate
initial production (LRIP) with eight
aircraft having been equipped with the
AN/APG-82(V)1. Five of these aircraft
are for testing and three for validation
and verification. The program's full-rate
production decision review was held in
March, with subsequent contract award
planned for the 3rd quarter of this year.
In total, 217 F-15E aircraft will be modified with the new radar.
Meanwhile, the F-15C AN/APG-63(V)3
program is also in LRIP with four lots
totaling 88 radar systems on contract,
of which 65 have been installed. This
program's full-rate production decision
review was also held in March, with a contract awarded in June for the first lot of
13 radars. Plans call for 179 F-15C aircraft
to be modified with the new radar by
FY2019 or when all radars are installed.

"To be able to operate
in this future threat
environment, the F-15
is going to need a
digital, highly-capable
EW system to be able
to protect the platform
and the pilot, and that is
what we're focused on -
to turn that requirement
into a material solution
in a time frame that
makes the F-15 relevant
for the future."
Also reflecting the need for much
tighter integration of platform avionics systems and EW sensors over TEWS,
both F-15C and F-15E aircraft are getting
a new Advanced Display Core Processor
II (ADCP II) mission computer. The Air
Force recently awarded an ADCP II development contract and plans to enter
flight test in FY2015, with initial production and installation in FY2017 for
both the F-15C and F-15E. A Joint Helmet Mounted Cueing System (JHMCS)
for the back seat of the F-15E is also in
development. This system is already onboard the F-15C.
As described by Voorheis, "All of
these activities are key interdependencies from an EPAWSS perspective. The
universe of aircraft that will get EPAWSS
has been defined as those aircraft that
first get the new AESA radar and core
processor. These will be the predecessor
programs, and obviously, the Operational Flight Program (OFP) will be on there
as well so we have to make sure that it
aligns properly with where we fold into
the suite process." As for the display
requirements, Voorheis says that F-15Es
have adequate displays for EPAWSS, but
that the F-15Cs are receiving a new multifunction display as part of the ADCP
II upgrade program that will meet the
needs of EPAWSS.

The final EPAWSS acquisition strategy is now pending approval by OSD with
an expected signature in the 3rd quarter
of this year. An RFP and specifications
for a design contract taking the program
through PDR and CDR is expected to be
released shortly afterward. As described
by Voorheis, "There have been a number
of acquisition strategies debated, such
as going directly into Milestone B, going
into a Milestone A to do the design work
first and then going into a Milestone B,
etc., but the dates above assume that
we'll be going into a Milestone A and
Design Phase followed by a Milestone B
to enter the EMD phase. In that case, an
EMD contract would be expected sometime in 2016."
Also pending approval as part of the
acquisition strategy is a decision on
whether the Air Force will itself make
the EPAWSS contractor decision or delegate this task to the F-15 prime contractor, Boeing. According to Voorheis,
no official decision has been made at
this point, but prospective contractors
believe the latter will be the case, and
Voorheis adds that, "There is obviously
a draft acquisition strategy that we
talked about and, historically, on the
F-15 and other complex EMD programs,
the Air Force has used Boeing as the integrator and used them to select their
necessary suppliers for Group B kind of
efforts. I wouldn't expect us to deviate
too much from history on that, but the
Milestone Decision Authority (MDA) will
be the final sign off on the acquisition
strategy that we proposed."
As it stands now, the Air Force expects the F-15 to be an integral part
of its force through at least 2035, and
full-scale fatigue testing is scheduled
for 2014 and 2015 that will provide data
on the feasibility of a service life extension for the platform. Says Voorheis,
"To be able to operate in this future
threat environment, the F-15 is going
to need a digital, highly-capable EW
system to be able to protect the platform and the pilot, and that is what
we're focused on - to turn that requirement into a material solution in a time
frame that makes the F-15 relevant for
the future." a
Photos courtesy US Air Force.



JED - July 2014

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of JED - July 2014

The View From Here
Conferences Calendar
Courses Calendar
From the President
The Monitor
Washington Report
World Report
The Art of Fusion – Ew and Radar for Fighter Aircraft
EPAWSS: F-15 Ew Upgrade Ready to Launch
Technology Survey: Airborne Ir Decoys and Dispensers
EW 101
New Products
AOC Election Guide
AOC News
Index of Advertisers
JED Quick Look
JED - July 2014 - cover1
JED - July 2014 - cover2
JED - July 2014 - 3
JED - July 2014 - 4
JED - July 2014 - 5
JED - July 2014 - The View From Here
JED - July 2014 - 7
JED - July 2014 - Conferences Calendar
JED - July 2014 - 9
JED - July 2014 - Courses Calendar
JED - July 2014 - 11
JED - July 2014 - From the President
JED - July 2014 - 13
JED - July 2014 - 14
JED - July 2014 - The Monitor
JED - July 2014 - 16
JED - July 2014 - 17
JED - July 2014 - 18
JED - July 2014 - 19
JED - July 2014 - 20
JED - July 2014 - 21
JED - July 2014 - 22
JED - July 2014 - 23
JED - July 2014 - Washington Report
JED - July 2014 - 25
JED - July 2014 - World Report
JED - July 2014 - 27
JED - July 2014 - The Art of Fusion – Ew and Radar for Fighter Aircraft
JED - July 2014 - 29
JED - July 2014 - 30
JED - July 2014 - 31
JED - July 2014 - 32
JED - July 2014 - 33
JED - July 2014 - 34
JED - July 2014 - 35
JED - July 2014 - 36
JED - July 2014 - 37
JED - July 2014 - EPAWSS: F-15 Ew Upgrade Ready to Launch
JED - July 2014 - 39
JED - July 2014 - 40
JED - July 2014 - 41
JED - July 2014 - 42
JED - July 2014 - Technology Survey: Airborne Ir Decoys and Dispensers
JED - July 2014 - 44
JED - July 2014 - 45
JED - July 2014 - 46
JED - July 2014 - 47
JED - July 2014 - 48
JED - July 2014 - 49
JED - July 2014 - EW 101
JED - July 2014 - 51
JED - July 2014 - 52
JED - July 2014 - New Products
JED - July 2014 - 54
JED - July 2014 - AOC Election Guide
JED - July 2014 - 56
JED - July 2014 - 57
JED - July 2014 - 58
JED - July 2014 - 59
JED - July 2014 - 60
JED - July 2014 - 61
JED - July 2014 - 62
JED - July 2014 - AOC News
JED - July 2014 - 64
JED - July 2014 - Index of Advertisers
JED - July 2014 - JED Quick Look
JED - July 2014 - cover3
JED - July 2014 - cover4
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