Marotta Controls to Deliver Bolt-On Control Actuation System for AARGM-ER Missiles

Marotta Controls announced that it has designed and will be manufacturing a new Control Actuation System (CAS) for Northrop Grumman’s Advanced Anti-Radiation Guided Missile – Extended Range (AARGM-ER) missiles.

The CAS will be integrated into AARGM-ER missile specified for U.S. Navy and Air Force use. The AARGM-ER will be integrated on the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet, EA-18G Growler and F-35 Lightning II aircraft. The companies’ fourth collaboration, the AARGM-ER program leverages Marotta Controls’ vertically-integrated capabilities—advanced technical solutions from spec to production.

Marotta executes each step of the project in-house—designing, developing, and assembling the CAS’ motor dynamics, power electronics, and servo controller firmware. The sub-system will meet the AARGM-ER’s strict performance and form factor requirements for operation under high loads in extreme environments. Upon the completion of system development, Marotta will conduct qualification testing including operation in extreme vibratory and thermal environments.

“Marotta’s technical experts have an incredible track record of solving complex problems for customers; often by devising new design methods or physical components. It’s a competitive advantage we pride ourselves on,” said Adit Girdhari, Program Director, CAS and Weapons Systems, Marotta. “We now are applying that innovative approach to the AARGM-ER project. Given this program’s critical nature, we’re honored to help Northrop Grumman deliver a better, safer defense asset for our warfighter.”

The AARGM-ER CAS is the latest addition to Marotta’s actuator portfolio, which to date includes systems for various missile diameters, power profiles, fin configurations, and applications. The portfolio growth has led to a significant investment in the company’s production capabilities.

The AGM-88G AARGM-ER is an extended-range variant of the AGM-88E AARGM. The AARGM, currently in Full Rate Production (FRP), is a supersonic, air-launched tactical missile system that upgrades legacy AGM-88 High Speed Anti-Radiation Missile (HARM) systems with advanced capability to perform Destruction of Enemy Air Defense (DEAD) and Suppression of Enemy Air Defense (SEAD) missions.

AGM-88G AARGM-ER
Rendering of an AGM-88G Advanced Anti-Radiation Guided Missile-Extended Range (AARGM-ER). Northrop Grumman Photo.

AARGM is currently deployed with the U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps on the F/A-18C/D Hornet, F/A-18E/F Super Hornet and EA-18G Growler aircraft. AARGM is also integrated on the Italian Air Force’s Tornado Electronic Combat aircraft.

The AARGM-ER incorporates additional upgrades to improve operational capability including extended range and survivability. The AARGM-ER integrates existing AGM-88E AARGM sensors and electronics with an upgraded rocket motor and tail control system. The AARGM-ER will be integrated on the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet and EA-18G Growler aircraft and configured for internal carriage on the F-35 Lightning II.

The developmental contract for the AARGM-ER upgrade was awarded to Orbital ATK in January 2018. Orbital ATK was then acquired by Northrop Grumman.



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