USAF plans to enhance its ‘Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System Recap’

JSTARSThe USAF wants to install the radar and target indicator subsystems — which are part of its larger JSTARS surveillance and targeting system — into significantly smaller and more efficient aircraft, approximately the size of a business jet.

To accomplish this goal, the Air Force Materiel Command at Hanscom Air Force Base in Massachusetts released a sources sought document on Feb. 24 in search of the corporate expertise to support such an effort.

The Air Force may decide to issue a contract to enhance the aircraft and communications subsystems that are part of the Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System Recapitalization, or JSTARS Recap, system.

“The JSTARS Recap system will recapitalize the Joint STARS Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR)/Ground Moving Target Indicator (GMTI) Mission Area capability on a significantly smaller and more efficient airframe (business jet class) thereby reducing the life cycle costs of the weapon system,” says the sources sought document. “This implementation will utilize Open Systems Architecture (OSA) to ensure future competition, which will enable new capability to be added more quickly and more affordably throughout its lifecycle.”

The JSTARS Recap is intended to provide near real-time surveillance and targeting information on moving and stationary ground and surface targets.

“The system also detects slow moving, rotary, and fixed-wing aircraft, and rotating antennas, and has the ability to observe dismounted (personnel on foot) targets,” the notice explains.

The USAF emphasized in its notice that currently it is only committed to gathering market research information. It has not yet determined its procurement strategy, if any.

The work would be performed at Hanscom AFB in Massachusetts.

The Air Force wants to hear from prospective vendors by March 24. Its sources sought notice says interested parties should “assume contract award no sooner than 1QFY16.”

The notice also says that the Air Force is tentatively planning for an industry day sometime during the week of April 7 for the aircraft and communications subsystems that are related to JSTARS Recap.

Further information is available from Daniel Williams, a contracting officer, at 781-225-5323 or