EW System Transitioning to More Modern Aircraft

EW System Transitioning to More Modern Aircraft

The Compass Call initiative involves the installation of an advanced EW suite into a special-mission Gulfstream G550 that meets Air Force requirements.

BAE Systems’ advanced Compass Call electronic-warfare (EW) system is being installed in more modern operating platforms as part of the Cross Deck initiative. The EW system doesn’t lack for its jamming power or capabilities to disrupt enemy command and control operations, but it has been flown as the EW suite on aging aircraft, notably the EC-130H. The Cross Deck initiative involves integration of the high-performance EW system into an operating platform that can best take advantage of the EW system’s performance, such as an EC-37C aircraft (see figure).

The Compass Call initiative involves the installation of an advanced EW suite into a special-mission Gulfstream G550 that meets Air Force requirements. (Courtesy of BAE Systems)

BAE Systems is working with L3 Technologies for the cross-platform transition, installing the EW system into a special-mission Gulfstream G550 that meets Air Force requirements. The new platform will provide improved stand-off jamming capabilities and the flexibility to counter advanced enemy communications and radar threats.

“The Compass Call mission electronics are world-class EW systems that are in high demand from operational commanders because of their electronic attack capabilities and their ability to protect critical missions,” says Pamela Potter, director of Electronic Attack Solutions at BAE Systems. “The cross-decking program enables the Air Force to maintain existing, unmatched EW mission capabilities in an economical business jet that can fly faster, higher, and farther than its predecessor, improving mission effectiveness and survivability.”

A total of 10 new G550 aircraft are planned with the improved EW systems. Initial modifications of the first G550 are underway, with the first two enhanced-EW aircraft expected to be fielded in 2023. BAE Systems will continue to sustain the electronics for the fleet of EC-130H Compass Call aircraft while it develops, procures, manufactures, and integrates electronics for the new fleet.

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