Northrop Grumman has signed an agreement with ITT Exelis to jointly provide unique solutions for the US Navy's next-generation jammer (NGJ) programme.
Exelis Electronic Systems acting president Rich Sorelle said: "This collaboration will allow the companies to integrate the best of their independently developed subsystems and components into one truly interoperable system, ensuring US forces will be able to control the battlespace electromagnetic spectrum."
The team, which has been involved in electronic warfare and airborne electronic attack technological development since the 1960, will now compete for NGJ's next phase of critical naval combat capabilities in the technology demonstration phase.
Northrop Grumman military aircraft systems sector vice president and general manager Pat McMahon said that the Northrop Grumman-Exelis team would provide a low-risk technologically advanced solution in support of the programme.
"The demonstrated performance of both companies makes this team well-positioned to seamlessly transition into the technology demonstration phase of the programme and continue its long legacy of support to naval aviation and airborne electronic attack," McMahon added.
Aimed at providing airborne mission critical radar and communications jamming capability for future defence scenarios, the navy's NGJ programme initiative will develop a new jammer to replace the ageing ALQ-99 jamming system.
The ALQ-99 is currently mounted on an EA-6B Prowler and the EA-18G Growler electronic warfare jets to intercept and jam radio frequency signals.
In addition to suppressing and defeating enemy integrated air defence systems, the navy's NGJ will provide the ability to disrupt and disable an enemy's ground-based communications capabilities for US forces.
Northrop Grumman successfully completed the initial technology maturation (TM) phase of the NGJ programme in July, marking successful progress into its technology development phase scheduled to begin in 2013.