The three companies vying to build the Three-Dimensional Expeditionary Long-Range Radar for the military recently demonstrated prototypes of the system, and the program is moving to the engineering and manufacturing development phase (EMD).
The Theater Battle Control Division at Hanscom Air Force Base, Mass., evaluated prototypes of the radar system — known as 3DELRR; pronounced “three-dealer” — built by Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman and Raytheon. The radars were shown to representatives of the Air Force, Marine Corps and Office of the Secretary of Defense.
3DELRR is intended to detect, identify and track fixed- and rotary-wing aircraft and would replace the TPS-75 radar as the principal Air Force long-range, ground-based sensor.
“These demonstrations were the final contract activities for the twelve-month pre-engineering manufacturing and development period of 3DELRR’s [technology demonstration] phase,” said Suzanne Farrell, deputy program manager, in an Air Force news release. “They gave the program office the opportunity to evaluate each contractor’s initial design and validate compliance with 3DELRR requirements.”
The demonstrations included detection and tracking of “targets of opportunity” from nearby airports, the Air Force said.
A request for proposal for EMD with an option for low-rate initial production is anticipated to be released by the end of fiscal 2013.