On May 3rd Boeing delivered the first EA-18G Growler electronic attack aircraft to the U.S. Navy. The cockpit sub-assembly was produced by Bangalore-based Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL). The sub-assembly provides cockpit floodlighting compatible with the aircraft’s Night Vision Imaging System (NVIS).
Initially Boeing had awarded Bharat Electronics Limited for work on Super Hornet cockpit sub-assemblies back in March 2011. That contract included options to renew annually for up to four years. As a result of BEL’s demonstrated performance, Boeing recently exercised an option to renew the contract for another year.
“BEL continues to demonstrate its capabilities and its position as a valued partner to Boeing,” said Dennis Swanson, vice president of International Business Development for Boeing Defense, Space & Security in India. “BEL’s work on P-8I, Super Hornets and Growlers is another example of how Indian companies are becoming a part of the global supply chain while Boeing helps them expand their opportunities across the global aerospace industry.”
Other EA-18G parts produced by BEL include a complex-machined stowage panel for the Joint Helmet Mounted Cueing System connector cable and an avionics cooling system fan test switch panel with an AVIS-compatible floodlight assembly. Some of these cockpit sub-assemblies also will be installed on Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornets.
In addition to its F/A-18E/F and EA-18G work, BEL provides Identification Friend or Foe interrogators and Data Link II communications systems for the Indian Navy’s fleet of P-8I maritime reconnaissance aircraft. Boeing and BEL also partnered to establish the Analysis & Experimentation Centre in Bangalore in 2009. The center is a resource for collaboration, experimentation and discovery where the two companies work together to help the Indian Armed Forces understand the potential operational impacts of new system concepts, innovative technologies, and emerging and evolving processes.
BEL is an Indian defense public sector company and a leading Indian defense electronics company. It is engaged in the design, development and manufacture of a wide range of cutting-edge Command, Control, Communications, Computing and Intelligence solutions; military communication systems; radars and sonars, as well as naval and electronic warfare systems for defense and security applications.
The Boeing EA-18G Growler is an American carrier-based electronic warfare aircraft, a specialized version of the two-seat F/A-18F Super Hornet. The EA-18G will replace the Northrop Grumman EA-6B Prowlers in service with the United States Navy. The Growler’s electronic warfare capability is primarily provided by Northrop Grumman. The EA-18G began production in 2007 and entered operational service in late 2009.