U.S. Air Force
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Lockheed Martin to Overhaul B-52 Receivers

Oct. 11, 2021
B-52 aircraft are equipped with a few different ECM receiver types, to detect and deceive an adversary’s electronic-warfare (EW) equipment.

Electronic countermeasures (ECM) provide defensive and offensive capabilities to any military aircraft provided that an ECM receiver and equipment suite is well maintained to respond to the latest threats. For this purpose, the U.S. Air Force has awarded a requirements contract more than $49 million to Lockheed Martin Corp. for an overhaul of the ECM receiver in the B-52 bomber aircraft. The work, which will be performed at Lockheed in Oswego, NY, is expected to be completed by September 2026. The Air Force Sustainment Center at Tinker Air Force Base, OK is the contracting activity (per contract FA8119-21-D-0012).

B-52 aircraft (see the figure) are equipped with a variety of weapons and ECM receivers, including AN/ALQ-117 wideband ECM receivers with pairs of antennas mounted in the nose and pop-up antennas mounted along the tail, an AN/ALQ-122 false-target generator system to deceive an adversary’s radar system, and an AN/ALR-46(V) digital radar-warning-receiver (RWR) system. To maintain a low or invisible profile while in flight, antennas are fitted in tight spots or employed as pop-up units as needed.

About the Author

Jack Browne | Technical Contributor

Jack Browne, Technical Contributor, has worked in technical publishing for over 30 years. He managed the content and production of three technical journals while at the American Institute of Physics, including Medical Physics and the Journal of Vacuum Science & Technology. He has been a Publisher and Editor for Penton Media, started the firm’s Wireless Symposium & Exhibition trade show in 1993, and currently serves as Technical Contributor for that company's Microwaves & RF magazine. Browne, who holds a BS in Mathematics from City College of New York and BA degrees in English and Philosophy from Fordham University, is a member of the IEEE.

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