In September 2011, Thales Raytheon Systems in Fullerton, CA received a $162.7 million firm-fixed-price contract for 56 Sentinel AN/MPQ-64A3 radars, along with associated spares and fielding support. Work will be performed in Fullerton, CA, and Forest, MS, with an estimated completion date of June 1/14. One bid was solicited, with one bid received. The U.S. Army Contracting Command, Redstone Arsenal, AL manages the contract (W31P4Q-11-C-0301).
Their Sentinel radar was to be an integral part of the SL-AMRAAM surface to air missile system, until the US Army decided to assume more battlefield risk and cancel it. Even so, the X-band Sentinel pulse-doppler 3D radars can detect a wide variety of aerial targets, and are being bought for forward area air defense units of the U.S. Army and USMC. Raytheon refers to this buy as Improved Sentinel radars (MPQ-64F1), and conversations with Raytheon personnel confirm that the Pentagon’s “MPQ-64-A3” is the same radar. They also confirm its ability to pinpoint the origin of mortar and artillery fire, and note that its effective range has tripled over the original Sentinel, to 120 km/ 75 miles. Cargo HMMWVs are used as the companion/ towing vehicle, and are equipped with the requisite generator to provide power for the radar.
September 21/16: Egypt is to receive eight Sentinel AN/MPQ-64F1 radars following the foreign military sale approval by the US State Department. The package, including training and other associative equipment, is estimated to cost $70 million. Once delivered, the Sentinels will work toward improving existing Egyptian air-defense capabilities following a series of aviation disasters over the last year.