Raytheon readies full-scale development of carrier-based GPS landing system

PATUXENT RIVER NAS, Md., 12 Aug. 2015. U.S. Navy carrier aviation experts are planning to award a 6-year contract to Raytheon Co. for full-scale development of an aircraft carrier instrument landing system based on differential Global Positioning System (GPS) satellite navigation technology.

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PATUXENT RIVER NAS, Md., 12 Aug. 2015. U.S. Navy carrier aviation experts are planning to award a 6-year contract to Raytheon Co. for full-scale development of an aircraft carrier instrument landing system based on differential Global Positioning System (GPS) satellite navigation technology.

Officials of the Naval Air Systems Command at Patuxent River Naval Air Station, Md., have announced their intention to award a sole source contract to the Raytheon Space and Airborne Systems segment in El Segundo, Calif., for the engineering and manufacturing development (EMD) portion of the Sea-Based Joint Precision Approach and Landing System (JPALS) GPS aircraft landing system program.

Sea-Based JPALS is an all-weather, all-mission GPS-based landing system that provides landing guidance for carrier-based fixed-wing aircraft and helicopters, and features anti-jam protection for operating in electronic warfare (EW) environments.

The EMD contract for Sea-Based JPALS will run from 2016 to 2022, and will include the design, development, manufacture, integration, demonstration, and test of the Sea-Based JPALS system.

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The contract will also include 13 engineering development model units and other weapons replaceable assemblies, developmental test and operational test support, and a technical data package.

Sea-Based JPALS works with the GPS satellite navigation system to provide accurate, reliable, and high-integrity guidance for carrier-based fixed-wing aircraft and helicopters. Sea-Based JPALS is a differential GPS that will provide an adverse weather precision approach and landing capability.

Differential GPS uses network of fixed-base reference stations to broadcast the difference between the positions indicated by the GPS signals and known fixed positions. A digital correction signal is broadcast locally over short-range fixed-based transmitters.

Using differential GPS technology improves satellite navigation and positioning accuracy from about 15 meters using non-enhanced GPS to about 4 inches with differential GPS.

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Navy officials say they plan for initial operating capability (IOC) for Sea-Based JPALS in 2019, and full-operational capability (FOC) in 2030. JPALS test landings aboard the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt in late 2013.

Navy officials plan to award the contract to Raytheon sole-source, they say, because the company is the only responsible source. Raytheon is the original designer, developer, and manufacturer of the Sea-Based JPALS system, has been the system's prime contractor since 2008, and has completed the initial development work for the ship system.

Raytheon won a $232.8 million Navy contract in 2008 for Sea-Based JPALS system development and demonstration. For more information contact Raytheon Space and Airborne Systems online at www.raytheon.com, or Naval Air Systems Command at www.navair.navy.mil.

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