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Raytheon delivers first pods of the new electronic warfare system AN/ALQ-249 to US Navy.

| 2022

According to information published by the U.S. DoD on August 10, 2022, the U.S. Navy’s first AN/ALQ-249 Next Generation Jammer Mid-Band (NGJ-MB) production representative pods arrived at the Naval Air Warfare Center Aircraft Division (NAWCAD) Patuxent River, Maryland.
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Russian Vyborg Shipyard laid the Purga ice class coastguard ship of project 23550 925 001 First AN/ALQ-249 Next Generation Jammer Mid-Band (NGJ-MB) production representative pods (Picture source: U.S. DoD)

The two fleet representative test articles, which make up an NGJ-MB shipset, were delivered to the Airborne Electronic Attack Systems Program Office (PMA-234) pod shop where they will be used to complete the developmental test (DT) program and commence operational test (OT) that requires the use of operationally representative hardware and software.

The remainder of DT will be conducted by VX-23 and VX-31, located at the Naval Air Warfare Center Weapons Division, China Lake, California, and OT will be conducted by VX-9 at Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake.

To date, NGJ-MB has successfully completed more than 300 hours of developmental flight testing and has more than 5,000 hours of chamber and lab testing using the Engineering Development Models that were designed specifically for DT.

NGJ-MB is part of a larger system that will augment and ultimately replace the legacy ALQ-99 Tactical Jamming System currently used on the EA-18G Growler.

Belbin said NGJ-MB’s increased power and capacity to target multiple systems will be significant enhancements over the ALQ-99.

The U.S. Navy will receive six shipsets from Raytheon Intelligence & Space, the original equipment manufacturer. Once the flight test program is complete, the pods will be sent to the fleet in conjunction with the first Low Rate Initial Production (LRIP) shipsets for Initial Operational Capability (IOC), which is scheduled for fall 2023.

About the ALQ-99 airborne EW system

The ALQ-99 is an airborne integrated jamming system designed and manufactured by EDO Corporation. Receiver equipment and antennas are mounted in a fin-tip pod while jamming transmitters and exciter equipment are located in under-wing pods.

The system is capable of intercepting, automatically processing, and jamming received radio frequency signals. The system receivers can also be used to detect, identify and direction find those signals, providing signals intelligence (SIGINT) either automatically or manually.

The AN/ALQ-99 has a maximum power output of 10.8 kW in its older versions and 6.8 kW in its newer versions. It uses a ram air turbine to supply its own power.

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