Raytheon has won a $276 million contract to develop the Navy’s Next Generation Jammer (NGJ) for the service’s electronic attack air fleet, according to a contract released late Monday.
Raytheon beat out Northrop Grumman and a teaming effort between ITT Exelis and BAE Systems for the 22-month contract to develop the replacement to the ALQ-99 jammer — first introduced in the 1970s — currently in use by the Navy and the U.S. Marine Corps.
The contract is the next step in fielding the NGJ on the Navy’s EA-18G Growler electronic attack aircraft by 2020.
“Keys to success include demonstrations of required capabilities as well as crafting a design that will be tested and flown on the Growler during the subsequent 4.5 year engineering and manufacturing development phase,” read a Monday statement from Naval Air Systems Command.
The aged ALQ-99 systems, “are already hard-pressed to defeat the latest threat systems,” according to a late Monday report from Flight Global.
Airborne electronic attack — countering an enemy’s air defense systems — systems is an important component to the Navy’s ability to strike in contested air spaces.
While the U.S. Air Force has largely neglected electronic attack in favor of stealth technologies, the Navy has continued to develop the capability as an integrated component of carrier air wings. Navy Growlers were instrumental in defeating the air defense networks in Libya during 2011 Operation Odyssey Dawn.