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The US Navy has awarded RTX business Raytheon an USD 80 M (EUR 73 M) contract in a downselect to prototype an Advanced Electronic Warfare (ADVEW) system for the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet fighter, RTX announced in a press release on 19 December 2023.

The prototype will effectively be a replacement for the existing AN/ALQ-214 integrated defensive electronic countermeasure suite and AN/ALR-67(V)3 radar warning receiver, offering a consolidated solution to deliver superior electronic warfare (EW) capabilities to the backbone of the US Navy’s carrier air wing.

“These advancements are paving the way for the next generation of electronic warfare,” Bryan Rosselli, president of Advanced Products & Solutions at Raytheon, was quoted as saying in a company press release. “We are completely replacing and consolidating the legacy systems into a one-box solution that will deliver a generational refresh to the electronic warfare capability for the lifetime of the Super Hornet.”

Raytheon’s ADVEW offering will look to provide significant performance upgrades by modernising existing EW systems into fewer components and incorporating government-defined open architecture. Development of this new solution will closely align and integrate with other combat-proven radio frequency sensors and effectors employed by the Super Hornet.

ADVEW is thus intended to ensure that the navy’s fleet of F/A-18E/Fs maintain their operational EW advantage while significantly improving their survivability against advanced, complex threats.

Development and testing of ADVEW will mainly take place at Raytheon’s facilities in Goleta, California. During the prototype phase the system will undergo a preliminary design review, critical design review, and flight testing over a 36-month period.

A US Navy F/A-18E Super Hornet over Alaska in May 2021. Raytheon has been contracted by the US Navy to prototype a new EW suite for the Super Hornet. (Photo: USAF)