Naval Air: January 13, 2001

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The US Navy is interested in providing its attack aircraft, including the F-14 fighter, with a synthetic aperture radar that would allow them to attack ground targets in all types of weather. The radar would be carried in a pod (presumably the TARPS pod on F-14s and the SHARP pod on F-18s, replacing other sensors in these recon pods). Some F-18E/F Super Hornets will get an Active Electronically-Scanned Array radar that could detect ground targets with high precision, but pods would be available to be shared among F-18s without this AESA radar. What the Navy wants is a synthetic aperture radar with a range of 50 nautical miles that has enough accuracy to target Joint Direct Attack Munitions (which have a Circular Error Probable of 8 meters) and enough resolution to distinguish a truck from a tank.--Stephen V Cole

 


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