Multi-Role Electronically Scanned Array (MESA) Surveillance Radar

Multi-Role Electronically Scanned Array (MESA) Surveillance Radar

Multi-Role Electronically Scanned Array (MESA) Surveillance Radar

The ability to accurately detect and identify targets at increasingly longer ranges is critical to maintaining an advantage. The MESA radar electronically scans the skies around the Boeing 737-based aircraft, providing the warfighter with an unrestricted 360-degree view. The powerful MESA sensor provides mission crews with the tools needed to track airborne and maritime targets while maintaining continuous surveillance of the operational area.

The MESA radar for the AEW&C system provides critical domain awareness for warfighters and allows them to see farther and make accelerated and informed decisions to meet mission objectives.

surveillance radar with sky background

Targeted Energy and Increased Range

MESA provides the ability to dynamically adjust to each unique or emerging tactical situation. The advanced radar can extend its detection range without having to fly closer to a threat situation. By targeting its energy to the threat, the sensor can nearly double its detection range in the emphasis location, all while maintaining a full background of the entire battlespace. Compared to other surveillance radars, MESA also has higher update rates for enhanced tracking, bringing battle management to the edge of the radar surveillance envelope.

This powerful radar system enables tracking of airborne and maritime targets simultaneously, including the ability to revisit high profile targets at rapid rates.  At the same time, MESA provides a fully integrated, world-class, long-range Identification, Friend or Foe (IFF) capability to maintain continuous surveillance of the operational area.

radar in workshop

Maintaining Situational Awareness

Modern jamming threats can jeopardize the warfighters’ understanding of the environment. With MESA’s multiple channels and independent receivers, the sensor uses modern electronic protection techniques to adapt to jamming and electronic attack threats, while simultaneously maintaining situational awareness. No matter the threat, MESA ensures the warfighter retains a constant view of the battlespace.

surveillance radar with sky background

Proven and Trusted Capabilities

When tracking and identifying electronic signals and targets, false alarms or thermal noise can be mistakenly identified by a surveillance radar. With MESA’s quick updates of the entire landscape, the sensor provides higher quality data – reducing inaccuracies and furthering the edge of the warfighter.                         

Northrop Grumman’s MESA also has a robust IFF system that recently achieved AIMS certification for a new Mode 5 for the system. Mode 5 enhances the ability to protect our warfighters by using advanced waveforms, cryptology and techniques to further the proven performance of MESA and its IFF system. An IFF system identifies if the other signal is – as the name states – friend or foe.

Korean Air Force jet in air

The MESA Sensor is Mission-Ready

Northrop Grumman Corporation recently began testing for the United Kingdom’s first MESA sensor at the company’s radar range in Linthicum, Maryland. The state of the art, combat proven MESA sensor will soon provide the Royal Air Force with a long range first look, first engagement advantage against even the most sophisticated adversaries.

Australia, Turkey and South Korea have fielded AEW&C systems, with production underway on the second and third systems for the UK’s E-7A AEW&C systems.

In the News

us air force jet in flying in clouds

Northrop Grumman to Produce MESA for The U.S. Air Force E-7

radar in workshop

MESA Radar Sets Sights on Airborne Battlespace

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Bridie Bryant
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