Radar Cross-Section Testing of DD(X) Deckhouse Completed

Tuesday, August 16, 2005
Built out of carbon fiber, the DD(X) integrated deckhouse test article, pictured here at China Lake, Calif., is a one-of-a-kind technology demonstrator consisting of the forward and aft sections of the deckhouse, including an aft face that is fully populated with antennas. The DD(X) National Team,led by Northrop Grumman Corporation, has reached another milestone by completing fabrication and radar cross-section testing on the integrated deckhouse test article. Built out of carbon fiber, the integrated deckhouse test article is a one-of-a-kind technology demonstrator consisting of the forward and aft sections of the deckhouse, including an aft face that is fully populated with antennas that were supplied by potential subcontractors. “The radar cross section is a critical element in the stealth attributes of DD(X) and the excellent test results from this engineering development model confirm we continue to meet and exceed the planned targets and objectives," said Brian Cuccias, Northrop Grumman vice president and DD(X) program manager. "The radar cross-section tests verify the Flight 1 deckhouse will meet its portion of the overall radar cross-section budget. We are extremely satisfied with the DD(X) program’s successes to date and look forward to implementing these advanced technologies for our Navy and Marine Corp partners.” The tests, which took more than one year to prepare for, were performed at the Etcheron Valley Range facility at the Naval Air Warfare Center, in China Lake, Calif. The test team included employees from Northrop Grumman and Raytheon Company, as well as representatives from the U.S. Navy’s PMS 500 program office and Naval Surface Warfare Center, Carderock division. “This is the first time anything like the integrated deckhouse test article has ever been attempted and the results are extraordinary, particularly that something of this scale and complexity was built and worked the first time,” said Barry Heaps, director of Northrop Grumman’s Gulfport Composites Center for Excellence. “All in all, the onsite team of Northrop Grumman, Raytheon and Navy personnel adjusted very well to the rigors of the high desert and the aggressive work schedule and all have our appreciation for a job well done."

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