The U.S. Navy has declared initial operational capability (IOC) for the E-2D Advanced Hawkeye aircraft, designed, developed and manufactured by Northrop Grumman Corp. It is the newest and most technologically advanced variant of the venerable E-2 Hawkeye airborne early warning command and control (AEW&C) platform.
“This significant milestone is a result of the strong partnership between the fleet, the acquisition community and our industry partner,” said Capt. Drew Basden, commander, Airborne Command Control and Logistics Wing. “By achieving IOC, we can effectively deploy the E-2D for operational missions and continue our successful transition from the E-2C Hawkeye.”
Developed and produced by Northrop Grumman, the E-2D Advanced Hawkeye is the world’s only aircraft specifically designed as a carrier-based AEW&C system. The E-2D’s structurally distinctive design — which includes a rotating rotodome and four vertical stabilizer tail configuration — provides unprecedented, 360-degree surveillance to the warfighter.
“Since the first E-2D Advanced Hawkeye delivery in 2007, every aircraft has been, and continues to be, delivered on cost and on schedule,” said Capt. John Lemmon, program manager, E-2/C-2 Airborne Tactical Data System Program Office (PMA-231). “The E-2D Advanced Hawkeye represents a revolutionary jump in capabilities. I’m confident that the E-2D will continue to be ready, relevant and capable for decades to come and continue serving the Navy Carrier Strike Group with distinction.”
As the only DoD-designed, tested and in-production AEW&C platform, the E-2D Advanced Hawkeye has undergone a significant transformation from previous E-2 models, resulting in revolutionary capabilities. This includes the new, more powerful AN/APY-9 radar system, exclusive to the E-2D Advanced Hawkeye, which represents a two-generational leap in radar technology and allows the warfighter to “see” a greater number of targets at much greater distances – as well as new avionics and a glass cockpit.
“This is a significant milestone that the entire Navy, Northrop Grumman, and industry team can be proud of,” said Bart LaGrone, vice president, E-2/C-2 Programs, Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems. “We are proud of the pivotal role the E-2 Hawkeye has played, and continues to play, in military and humanitarian operations around the globe with the Navy as well as our international operators – the Japan Air Self-Defense Force, the French Navy, and the air forces of Taiwan and Egypt.”
The Navy’s E-2D Advanced Hawkeye program of record is for 75 aircraft, of which Northrop Grumman has already delivered 15 production aircraft.