Military

Raytheon nabs $128M Air Force contract for Cobra King, Gray Star radars

A $128 million contract for improvement of mobile sensors on U.S. Air Force radar was awarded to Raytheon Co., the Defense Department announced.

The upgrade applies to Cobra King and Gray Star’s radar platforms in use by the U.S. military and will ensure that all data collection opportunities that pass through the radar’s field of view can be captured, the Pentagon said on Tuesday.

Cobra King is a state-of-the-art mobile radar system, called an active electronic scanned array, of S- and X-band phased radars in use by the Air Force Technical Applications Center. It provides radar data to the Department of Defense’s strategic community, the Missile Defense Agency and other government agencies.

The Cobra King is the radar system used by the USNS Howard G. Lorenzen.

The Lorenzen, the Navy’s newest missile-tracking ship, is a 534-foot long vessel with two radar systems, each weighing 500,000 pounds and prominently mounted on the ship’s decks. They are used to track reentry vehicles, missile interceptors, small satellites and similar projectiles.

The Gray Star system similarly includes three X- and S-band radar systems that detect, acquire, track and collect data on targets of interest. It is currently aboard the 224-foot long USNS Invincible, a ship of the Navy’s Military Sealift Command.

The Navy owns the ships, while the radar systems were developed and are owned by the Air Force. All are components of the Defense Department’s Cobra program, which monitors missile and space launches from airborne, stationary, land-moveable and seaborne configurations.

Work on the new contract, to be performed at Patrick Air Force Base in Florida, as well as overseas locations, is expected to be finished by October 31. 2021.

Related Links

Space Technology News – Applications and Research



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Oct. 11, 2019, marks the 25th anniversary of the end of a space mission that transformed the way we use radar to observe large-scale environmental processes on our home planet. The Spaceborne Imaging Radar-C and X-Band Synthetic Aperture Radar (SIR-C/X-SAR) mission made available to people worldwide the scientific data used to this day to inform decisions to slow and mitigate climate change.

The SIR-C instrument, built by NASA’S Jet Propulsion Laborator in Pasadena, California, and the X-SAR instr … read more


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