TEWKSBURY, MAThe US Navy has successfully tracked targets with a multiband radar featuring a common radar suite controller. This milestone, which took place at the Navy's Engineering Test Center in Wallops Island, VA, was accomplished through the use of an engineering development model of the dual-band radar (DBR). This model was developed by Raytheon Co. and its subcontractor Lockheed Martin Corp., which are the Navy's prime contractors.

The DBR tracked a target simultaneously at X- and S-band frequencies. This task required the simultaneous use of AN/SPY- 3's and VSR's search capabilities to acquire and track the target. The test also demonstrated the system's ability to perform automatic handovers from S-band to X-band in precision tracking modea key feature of the radar and its single track manager.

This naval radar is expected to provide advanced surveillance and ship missile-defense capabilities for the Zumwaltclass destroyer (DDG 1000) and Ford-class aircraft carrier (CVN 78) in deep-water and littoral environments. The system combines the benefits of the X-band AN/SPY-3 multifunction radar and the S-band volume search radar (VSR). It vows to provide superior performance in a broad range of environments and against a variety of threats.

This system is the first naval radar that is capable of simultaneous, coordinated operation across two frequency ranges. The DBR is the result of more than a decade of collaboration between Raytheon, Lockheed Martin, and the Navy. The radar is now in production for the Zumwalt and Ford class, where it will replace six legacy radar systems.

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