Military Embedded Systems

Advanced high-res sensors produced for Hawk Air Defense System by Northrop Grumman


March 26, 2013

John McHale

Editorial Director

Military Embedded Systems

ROLLING MEADOWS, IL. Northrop Grumman Corp. engineers developed the Fourth Generation Tracking Adjunct Sensor (4G TAS), which is the latest upgrade to the company's high-resolution electro-optical/infrared (EO/IR) sensors that are used for the Hawk air defense system. The sensors detect and track low, fast targets in day and night conditions and passes them on to the Hawk's fire control radar.

The upgrades to the sensor's baseline configuration include a new 640 x 480 pixel infrared sensor that should more than double the resolution of the current sensor system. A new charged-coupled device camera aimed at increase=ing resolution and enhancing operation in low-light environments also is included. The sensor upgrades also bring more reliable and sustainable electronics for ensuring continued logistics support for the system. All existing TAS, Improved TAS and Advanced Infrared TAS systems may be upgraded to the 4G TAS configuration.

The 4G TAS is a high-resolution, gimbaled, stabilized sensor system that enables passive EO/IR searching, tracking, launch, and pass-off functions for the Hawk air defense system. It can perform threat assessment and identification beyond visual range, enabling real-time situational awareness.


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Northrop Grumman

2980 Fairview Park Drive
Falls Church, VA 22042
Radar/EW - Sensors
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