Military Embedded Systems

Sonar contract for anti-submarine warfare won by Raytheon


September 03, 2015

John McHale

Editorial Director

Military Embedded Systems

Sonar contract for anti-submarine warfare won by Raytheon

TEWKSBURY, Mass. Raytheon won a U.S. Navy contract valued at $33 million for the production, integration, testing, and delivery of AN/AQS-22 Airborne Low Frequency Sonar (ALFS) systems for applications such as anti-submarine warfare (ASW).

ALFS, the primary undersea warfare sensor for the Navy's MH-60R multi-mission helicopter, has enhanced airborne ASW capability. It is highly integrated with the helicopter and with the MK 54 lightweight torpedo, enabling the full detect to engage ASW mission capability from the helicopter.

ALFS is the mission-critical ASW capability for the defense of U.S. Navy strike groups, providing submarine detection, tracking, localization, classification, acoustic intercept, underwater communication and environmental data collection. It is a dipping sonar with multi-frequency operation, enabling the system to adapt its performance to varying environmental conditions. With a rapid search rate and extended range, ALFS identifies threats sooner, enabling it to cover a larger area. The system's longer detection range over a wider area also reduces the number of helicopters required to perform active anti-submarine warfare screening.

Coupling ALFS with the MK 54 lightweight torpedo, Raytheon engineers can provide full anti-submarine warfare engagement capability. The MK 54 is the U.S. Navy's next-generation ASW weapon deployed from surface ships, helicopters, and fixed-wing aircraft to detect and attack underwater targets. Integrated onboard the MH-60R, MK 54 is the primary weapon for the helicopter's ASW mission.

Low-rate initial production (LRIP) production on the AFLS was started by Raytheon in 2002 and since that time they have delivered more than 130 ALFS systems. Eight systems have been deployed to the Royal Australian navy under U.S. Navy FMS, with an another 17 planned for delivery by 2016.

Included in the contract is an option for additional systems for U.S. inventory and potential Foreign Military Sale (FMS). The option, if exercised, would bring the cumulative value of this contract to more than $98 million.


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