Saturday, October 10, 2009

New warning system has been identified as AN/AAR-47

By Joachim Jacob

As reported, A-10Cs 81-0960 and 81-0992 from the 81st Fighter Squadron, 52nd Fighter Wing, Spangdahlem AB, Germany, were on static display during Radom Air Show 2009 at Sadków Radom Airport, Poland. Both aircraft arrived August 27, 2009, and departed to their home base August 31, 2009. Warthog News contributor Mariusz Krawczyk from Poland had the opportunity to take some walk around shots of both aircraft.

Mariusz's friend Paweł, also from Poland, noticed something interesting on A-10C 81-0992. They got explanation from the pilot that's a new warning system. It detects the moment of firing missiles against the aircraft. You can also see it on both wing tips.

Meanwhile, this warning system - not really new but new installed on some Hogs - has been identified as AN/AAR-47 infrared missile warning system.

Side-view of A-10C 81-0992 with new antenna behind the cockpit and also with new sensor in front of the left wingtip. (Photo by Mariusz Krawczyk) Hi-res

A closer look. (Photo by Mariusz Krawczyk) Hi-res

And more closer... (Photo by Mariusz Krawczyk) Hi-res

In comparison: The left wing tip of A-10C 81-0960. (Photo by Mariusz Krawczyk) Hi-res

The two new sensors on the rear tailcone of A-10C 81-0992. One looks back to six, the other looks down to ground. (Photo by Mariusz Krawczyk)

In comparison: The rear tailcone of A-10C 81-0960. (Photo by Mariusz Krawczyk) Hi-res

The designation of this warning system has been identified now by the caption of the following picture, already released by 124th Wing Public Affairs June 17, 2009, and posted with the related news article A-10 'assembly-line' maintenance concept a model of efficiency on Warthog News June 18, 2009:

A team of Idaho Air National Guard maintainers from the 124th Wing at Gowen Field in Boise, Idaho reinstall the leading edges on the wing of A-10 78-0705 from the 104th Fighter Squadron, 175th Wing (Maryland ANG), Martin State AP Air Guard Station, Baltimore, Maryland. The aircraft received a new AAR-47 infrared missile warning system as part of the A-10 Consolidated Install Program June 16, 2009. (Air Force photo by Master Sgt. Tom Gloeckle) Hi-res

BTW: This news article was re-published by National Guard as A-10 'assembly-line' maintenance concept a model of efficiency

Sorry, but at that time I simply overlooked the given AAR-47 info. Today, I checked again the latest A-10 shots posted on my blog. And I found out there are already some more Hogs equipped with this system. First sample:

A-10 81-0952 whit new antenna behind the cockpit. All unit markings are removed, related panels are painted over. Looks like this jet will also return back to Continental United States (CONUS) with unknown future. (Photo by Mark Handley) Full size

Some of the known A-10s with AN/AAR-47 which are already confirmed by photo proofs (special thanks to some of my Warthog News contributors):

81st Fighter Squadron:
A-10 80-0281
A-10 81-0951
A-10 81-0952
A-10C 81-0980
A-10 81-0983
A-10 81-0984
A-10 81-0991
A-10C 81-0992
A-10 82-0647
A-10 82-0656

Please await further updates.

The system:

Mariusz Krawczyk and his friend Paweł contributed to this report.

Latest related press release:

ATK Awarded $49 Million Follow-on Contract to Provide AAR-47 Missile Warning System Components for U.S. and Allied Military Aircraft

ATK's Combat-Proven AAR-47 System Credited With Saving Numerous Air Crew and Aircraft From Missile Attacks

Work to be Performed at ATK's Clearwater, Florida Facility

MINNEAPOLIS, Oct. 7, 2009 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Alliant Techsystems (NYSE: ATK) has been awarded a $49.3 million contract by the U.S. Navy for the procurement of AAR-47 Missile Warning System components for the U.S. military and allies. These systems include both the AAR-47 A(V)2 and B (V)2 configurations. The majority of work will be performed at ATK's Clearwater, Fla., location, and is expected to be completed in early 2012.

ATK's AAR-47 missile warning system is an electronic warfare system designed to protect helicopters and aircraft against surface-to-air missile threats. The AAR-47 missile warning system is installed on aircraft flown by the U.S. and its allies in more than 16 countries. ATK has been under contract to the U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps since 1991 to manufacture the AAR-47 electronic warfare system. The systems are installed on more than 2,600 fixed and rotary-wing aircraft including the C-5, C-17, C-130, P-3, AH-1W, UH-1N, V-22, and numerous others.

"ATK's AAR-47 missile warning system has been credited with saving dozens of aircraft and their crews from attack," said Bill Kasting, vice president and general manager of ATK's Integrated Systems division. "The innovative and affordable combination of AAR-47's reliable sensor technology and mature processing algorithms are combat-proven and protecting our warfighters today."

ATK is a premier aerospace and defense company with more than 18,000 employees in 22 states, Puerto Rico and internationally, and revenues of approximately $4.8 billion. News and information can be found on the Internet at [...]

More details:
AN/AAR-47 Electro-Optic Missile Warning and Laser System
ATK data sheet

If I'm right, there was no further ATK info about any A-10 upgrade with they system.

Older sources:
AN/AAR-47(V)2 (by ATK Integrated Systems)
A-10 'assembly-line' maintenance concept a model of efficiency
AN/AAR-47 Missile Approach Warning System

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