Northrop Grumman F-16 Electronic Warfare Suite Counters Modern Radio Frequency Threats During Air Force Testing
Northrop Grumman Corporation’s AN/ALQ-257 Integrated Viper Electronic Warfare Suite (IVEWS) has completed U.S. Air Force Laboratory Intelligence Validated Emulator (LIVE) testing. This was the first time the ultra-wideband architecture in IVEWS underwent LIVE testing. The system exceeded multiple benchmarks and could counter modern radio frequency (RF) threats.
“As advanced radio frequency threats continue to proliferate, the protection afforded by IVEWS is essential,” said James Conroy, vice president of navigation, targeting, and survivability at Northrop Grumman. “This successful evaluation under very challenging conditions is an important step on the path to fielding the suite.”
During the test, simulated air defense radar pulses were injected directly into IVEWS to verify the suite’s ability to recognize and counter advanced threats. The signals used in LIVE testing are validated models that provide realistic representations of radio frequency threats. LIVE is an intelligence-validated, closed-loop RF direct-injection threat radar emulator based on threat capabilities and features. It allows for the testing of electronic warfare systems in realistic environments.
Fully digital and founded on secure, modular, open systems design principles, the receiver/exciter architecture in IVEWS provides significant advantages over heritage systems. Featuring highly efficient broadband power amplifiers and adaptive countermeasure modulations, it is designed to detect, identify, locate, and defeat next-generation sensors and weapons. This technology allows for extended frequency coverage, full spatial coverage, and more rapid responses.
IVEWS is a program of record electronic warfare suite for the U.S. Air Force F-16 fleet. The system is exportable for current and previous generations of F-16 aircraft.