Published on November 16, 2023, 10:54 pm

Lockheed Martin’S Tpy-4 Radar: A Game-Changer In Air Surveillance And Defense Systems

Lockheed Martin is poised to deliver its advanced TPY-4 radar to the U.S. Air Force for further examination after undergoing extensive internal testing and modifications at its facilities in rural New York.

The TPY-4 radar is a software-defined sensor that can detect and track various targets, from small drones to jets and ballistic missiles. It is set to replace the aged TPS-75 radar as part of the Three-Dimensional Expeditionary Long Range Radar effort, or 3DELRR. Lockheed’s technology was chosen by the Air Force over an offering from Northrop Grumman due to factors like production and sustainment costs, as well as overall capability.

One notable feature of the TPY-4 is its upfront software-defined nature. According to Steve Allen, Lockheed’s program director for ground-based air surveillance, this allows for easy adaptation to changes in targets or surveillance requirements by simply updating the software. He anticipates that once handed off at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida, the TPY-4 will be tested rigorously to fully explore its capabilities. The testing phase is expected to commence in the summer.

The TPY-4 employs an active electronically scanned array (AESA), which provides flexibility through multitasking and digital reprogramming. It comes in both fixed and mobile variants. In May 2022, Lockheed announced the successful production of the first TPY-4, with multiple units being worked on during a recent tour in November.

International interest in the TPY-4 is high, with several countries waiting for confirmation from the U.S. Air Force regarding its maturity level before proceeding with their own acquisitions. The Norwegian military has already signed a contract and expects delivery soon.

Lockheed Martin enjoys significant global prominence as the largest defense contractor based on defense-related revenue, earning over $63 billion in 2022, according to Defense News Top 100 analysis.

In conclusion, Lockheed Martin’s advanced TPY-4 radar is making significant strides, with the forthcoming evaluation by the U.S. Air Force and growing international interest solidifying its position as an essential component in modern air surveillance and defense systems.

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