Raytheon demos new MALD-J architecture
Raytheon and the US Naval Research Lab have demonstrated a new rapid-replacement, modular architecture on the Miniature Air Launched Decoy-Jammer (MALD-J) for electronic warfare (EW) payloads, the company announced on 9 September.
The new CERBERUS architecture was demonstrated in a series of successful captive flights during the Northern Edge exercise in Alaska. Four EW payloads, developed separately by the team, were used in 12 operationally relevant missions.
During the demonstration, a MALD vehicle was carried below a Sabreliner, with the payload controlled from within the aircraft cabin. The interchangeable payloads, each customised for a specific mission and threat, were swapped onto the captive carry vehicle in less than one minute.
The payload system architecture was developed under a four-year programme by Raytheon along with the US Pacific Command and Naval Air Systems Command (PMA-234).
The quick interchange structural connection was provided by a half-turn quick lock technique developed by Dallara for IndyCar racing. The design was altered to meet aerospace form factors and environmental requirements.
Jeff Heyer, head of electronic warfare strategic planning organisation, Naval Research Laboratory, said: ‘The CERBERUS design is cost-effective and expands MALD capabilities to address new missions and target sets. It's a sensible approach for mitigating payload obsolescence. The design embodies the CNO's 'Payloads over Platforms' vision.’
MALD-J is in full rate production for the US Air Force.
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