WASHINGTON – U.S. Navy anti-air warfare experts needed an electronics manufacturer to build sensors and weapons tactical networking terminals for the carrier-based E-2C and E-2D airborne early warning aircraft. They found their solution from the DRS Laurel Technologies segment of Leonardo DRS in Johnstown, Pa.Officials of the Naval Sea Systems Command in Washington announced an $8.8 million order to DRS Laurel on Friday to build AN/USG-3B Cooperative Engagement Capability (CEC) equipment sets for E-2C and E-2D military aircraft.The CEC is a tactical sensor and weapons network for anti-air warfare that combines information from sensors operating over broadly distributed geographic areas in a common tactical picture for battle groups at sea. It improves overall situational awareness, and enables fleet commanders to work closely together to attack enemy forces from long ranges.The AN/USG-3 is the airborne designation of CEC deployed in E-2C and E-2D aircraft. Other CEC terminals are aboard Navy surface warships; U.S. Marine Corps command posts, aviation command-and-control centers, and surveillance aerostats.CEC blends sensors and weapons into a integrated real-time network that expands the battlespace; enhances situational awareness; increases depth of fire; enables long intercept ranges; and improves decision and reaction times.It extracts and distributes sensor information such that the superset of this data is available to all participating CEC-equipped units by fusing the distributed data from shipboard, airborne, composite tracking network ground-mobile units, Joint Land Attack Cruise Missile Defense Elevated Netted Sensor System (JLENS), and coalition partners into one fire-control-quality air track picture.
The system uses line-of-sight data distribution to share radar-measurement data among sensors and weapons to create one distributed integrated air picture. It combines surveillance and targeting information such that the combined system is greater than the sum of its parts.The jam-resistant CEC obtains target track information to form one real-time composite track to help coordinate theater air and missile defense to engage incoming cruise missiles.CEC consists of the Data Distribution System (DDS), the Cooperative Engagement Processor (CEP), and interface with combat systems and sensors.The DDS encodes and distributes own-ship sensor and engagement data. The CEP processes force levels of data in near real-time, and enables surface warships and other weapons platforms to can cue their onboard sensors and weapons to engage targets without actually tracking them.