Low Band Consolidated (LBC) and Improved Universal Exciter Upgrade (iUEU) Prototypes Conceptual Plans

S²MARTS Project No. 20-12B
Mar 11, 2021

Questions & Answers


Feb 10, 2021

RFS & Supporting Documents

S2MARTS – LBC iUEU – RFS – 2-10-2021

The Department of Defense is seeking support to determine if there is capability to design, engineer, test, and manufacture Gallium Nitride (GaN) technology and/or improve Universal Excited Upgrade (iUEU) addressing obsolescence with Application-Specific Integrated Circuit (ASIC) functionality prototypes.

EA-18G Growler aircraft integrates advanced airborne electronic attack capabilities with advanced strike capabilities, including advanced weapons, sensors and communications. The block 1 Growler is fitted with up to three AN/ALQ-99 radar jamming pods and has been in use by U.S military forces and its allies to deny targeting information to an enemy. The AN/ALQ-99 Tactical Jamming System (TJS) is the first fully integrated computer-controlled support jamming system.

One of those modular transmitters is the Low Band Transmitter (LBT). The LBT expanded the capability to effectively jam hostile, low frequency radar and communications signals in a tactical environment, and was at the time a Reliability & Maintainability (R&M) upgrade to the current AN/ALQ-99 TJS. The Low Band Consolidation (LBC) is needed to address current shortfalls in meeting Band 4 Fleet readiness. Increases in EA-18G inventory have increased Band 4 transmitter requirements beyond the current inventory level. Given that Band 4 has been out of production for over 20 years, LBC is needed to replace this aging transmitter and increase inventory of Band 4 capability to meet current Fleet requirements.

Another modular component of AN/ALQ-99 TJS is the Universal Exciter Upgrade (UEU). The UEU was the result of an Engineering Change Proposal (ECP) to update the Universal Exciter (UE). It increased reliability and maintainability, added improved modulation wave forms for low frequency radar and communications, command and control jamming, and provisions for coherent and performance countermeasures capabilities. The UEU requires obsolescence upgrades to address scarce component shortages and replacement of aged technology.

The desired end state of this project is that the LBC w/GaN Tech will implement LBT frequency coverage to include Band 4 frequencies and consolidate to one transmitter. This change will also address obsolescence within LBT and Band 4 transmitters as well as updating technology such as the use of GaN material for semiconductor power devices. The iUEU will address obsolescence with Application-Specific Integrated Circuit (ASIC) functionality, enhance current UEU capabilities and encompass technology upgrades that will bring exciters to be electronically equivalent to Next Generation Jammer and support with common JATO libraries.