NGC Contracted for USN/RAN SPQ-9B Radars & SupportApr 25, 2012 13:08 UTC by Defense Industry Daily staff
Northrop Grumman Systems Corp. in Melville, NY makes the AN/SPQ-9B radar system. Its mission is to serve as a primary fire control or backup radar that can detect and track low-flying, high-speed, small radar cross-section anti-ship missile targets in heavy clutter environments. That’s especially useful amidst waves, or close to shore.
The SPQ-9 is not a new radar, though it has received a number of upgrades over the years. It was originally built to be the main air defense radar on several American destroyer and cruiser classes, but over time it has been relegated to a secondary role on advanced air defense ships to fill in coverage gaps, or a slot on some amphibious ship classes as a relatively inexpensive, medium-capability main radar. Orders continue:
An upgrade of the AN/SPQ-9A, the AN/SPQ-9B supports surface engagement capability in detecting and tracking sea-skimming, low radar cross-section, high-speed targets. It uses a high resolution, track-while-scan, X-Band, pulse Doppler radar to provide real-time acquisition and automatic tracking of multiple targets. The AN/SPQ-9B is available as a stand-alone radar, or as a replacement for the AN/SPQ-9A.
Its most prominent carriers are America’s CG-47 Ticonderoga Class guided-missile cruisers, which provide top-end area air defense for the US Navy. On the cruisers, this track-while-scan radar is integrated into the Mk 86 gun fire control system (GFCS) and the Aegis Combat Direction System. The Royal Australian Navy’s Hobart class Aegis “air warfare destroyers” may also be equipped with the AN/SP-9B as a secondary radar, per DSCA requests.
Despite its improvements, the AN/SPQ-9B has known limitations. These were succinctly stated in a FY 2009 testing report for the San Antonio Class that cited: “Problems associated with SPS-48E and SPQ-9B radar performance against certain Anti-Ship Cruise Missile attack profiles.” Modern radars are beginning to intrude upon its niche, and offer capability levels that the SPQ-9B is hard pressed to match, but its installed base and new platform orders guarantee contracts for some time to come.
Contracts and Key Events
Work will be performed in Baltimore, MD (80%); Melville, NY (15%); and Norwalk, CT (5%), and is expected to be complete by May 2013 (N00024-10-C-5343).
April 4/11: Northrop Grumman Systems Corp. in Garden City, NY receives a $30 million contract modification for AN/SPQ-9B radar sets and combat interface kits.
Work will be performed in Baltimore, MD (80%), Bethpage, NY (15%), and Norwalk, CT (5%), and is expected to be complete by May 2013. US Naval Sea Systems Command in Washington, DC manages the contract (N00024-10-C-5343).
April 1/10: Northrop Grumman Systems, Inc. in Garden City, N.Y., is being awarded a $41.5 million modification to previously awarded contract (N00024-10-C-5343) for the delivery of AN/SPQ-9B radar sets and combat interface kits for use on U.S. Navy ships. Work will be performed in Melville, NY (91.2%); Norwalk, CT (5.5%); and Baltimore, MD (3.3%), and is expected to be complete by April 2011. The Naval Sea Systems Command in Washington, DC manages this contract.
A subsequent corporate release confirms that this purchase covers 6 radar shipsets, including the 3rd radar of a 3-system order for the Royal Australian Navy’s Hobart Class Air Warfare Destroyers; and 3 antenna groups. The follow-on order is part of a five-year $281.5 million contract awarded in October 2009.
Oct 30/09: A $26.6 million firm-fixed-price contract for 4 AN/SPQ-9B radar sets combines purchases for the US Navy (56%) and the government of Australia (44%) under the Foreign Military Sales Program. They will deliver 2 horizon search AN/SPQ-9B radar sets to each customer, including above and below deck hardware, and combat interface kits.
This contract includes options which would bring the duration to 5 years, and the cumulative value of this contract to $281.5 million. Those options encompass U.S. Nimitz Class aircraft carriers, Ticonderoga Class cruisers and amphibious assault ships; as well as the U.S. Coast Guard’s Bertholf Class National Security Cutters and the Australian Navy’s Hobart Class.
Northrop Grumman will perform the work in Melville, NY (91.2%); Norwalk, CT (5.5%); Baltimore, MD (3.3%), and expects to complete it by April 2011. This contract was not competitively procured. The Naval Sea Systems Command in Washington, DC, is the contracting activity (N00024-10-C-5343). See also NGC release.
Oct 30/09: A $7.9 million cost- plus-fixed fee contract for continued design agent and technical engineering support to AN/SPQ-9B radars during installation, integration, testing, and refurbishment. This contract includes options which, if exercised, would bring the cumulative value to $39.3 million. It combines purchases for the US Navy, (71.8%) and the government of Australia (28.2%) under the Foreign Military Sales Program.
Work will be performed in Melville, NY (96.9%); Baltimore, MD (2.4%); Norwalk, CT (0.7%), and is expected to be completed by October 2010. This contract was not competitively procured by the Naval Sea Systems Command in Washington, D.C. (N00024-10-C-5341).