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US Army validates improved performance of AN/APG-78 V6 software upgrade for AH-64E Apache


The LONGBOW Limited Liability Company, a joint venture of Northrop Grumman Corporation and Lockheed Martin, announced the successful completion of the Army’s AH-64E Apache Follow-On Test and Evaluation II (FOT&E II) for the AN/APG-78 LONGBOW Fire Control Radar (FCR).


US Army validates improved performance of ANAPG 78 V6 software upgrade for AH 64E Apache AH-64 E helicopter(Picture source: US Army)


During the FOT&E, the modernized LONGBOW FCR successfully demonstrated many new operational modes and capabilities, including maritime, single target track, and 360-degree surveillance mode, as well as extended detection range capability against land, air and sea targets. The detection range has doubled and improved detection of unmanned aerial vehicles.

“Our open systems architecture approach allowed us to unlock phenomenal performance without any hardware changes,” said Susan Bruce, LONGBOW LLC vice president and vice president at Northrop Grumman Mission Systems. “Version six is a major update to LONGBOW’s capabilities providing significant situational awareness and targeting capabilities to the warfighter.”

Validating these performance enhancements during FOT&E, the LONGBOW radar successfully detected numerous ground and maritime targets at extended detection ranges. Those targets were then engaged and destroyed by AGM-179 Joint Air-to-Ground Missile missiles fired from the Apache helicopter.

“LONGBOW’s Version 6 software helps increase survivability to the AH-64E aircrews, reduces workload and enhances stand-off range,” stated Jim Messina, LBL JV president and program director at Lockheed Martin.

The LONGBOW radar provides Apache aircrews with automatic target detection, location, classification and prioritization, while enabling rapid, multi-target engagement in all weather conditions, over multiple types of terrain and through battlefield obstacles. To date, nearly 500 LONGBOW FCR systems have been delivered to the U.S. Army in 12 nations.

Headquartered in Bethesda, Maryland, Lockheed Martin is a global security and aerospace company that employs approximately 100,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. This year the company received three Edison Awards for ground-breaking innovations in autonomy, satellite technology and directed energy.