Northrop Grumman celebrates the 15-year anniversary of the E-2D Advanced Hawkeye “digital quarterback” first flight

Northrop Grumman celebrates the 15-year anniversary of the E-2D Advanced Hawkeye “digital quarterback” first flight

By Dario Leone
Aug 4 2022
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On Aug. 3, 2022 Northrop Grumman celebrated the 15-year anniversary of the E-2D Advanced Hawkeye’s first flight that occurred on this day in 2007.

On Aug. 3, 2022 Northrop Grumman celebrated the 15-year anniversary of the E-2D Advanced Hawkeye’s first flight that occurred on this day in 2007.

The continuous improvements in early airborne radars by 1956 led to the concept of an airborne early warning and command and control aircraft. The first aircraft to perform this mission was the Grumman E-1 Tracer (a variant of the S-2 Tracker anti-submarine aircraft), which saw service from 1954 to 1964. The E-1’s successor, the E-2 Hawkeye, was the first carrier-based aircraft designed from the outset for the all-weather airborne early warning and command and control mission. Since replacing the E-1 in 1964, the Hawkeye has been the “eyes of the fleet.” Since its combat debut during the Vietnam conflict, the E-2 has served the Navy around the world.

The E-2C became operational in 1973 and surpassed one million flight hours in August 2004. The E-2D Advanced Hawkeye is the newest variant of the E-2 aircraft platform, replacing the E-2C Hawkeye.

In August 2003, Northrop Grumman and Team Hawkeye committed to delivering Delta One, the first system development and demonstration (SD&D) aircraft and on Aug. 3, 2007, it delivered on that promise conducting its successful first flight.

The US Navy’s “digital quarterback” gives the warfighter expanded battlespace awareness, especially in the area of information operations delivering battle management, theater air and missile defense, and multiple sensor fusion capabilities in an airborne system. The Northrop Grumman built Advanced Hawkeye is the cornerstone of the US Navy’s theater air and missile defense architecture in the littorals, overland, and open sea.

With a two-generation leap in radar sensor capability and a robust network enabled capability, the Advanced Hawkeye delivers critical, actionable data to joint forces and first responders. These advances provide warfighters with the necessary situational awareness to compress the time between initial awareness and active engagement.

Some of the features of the Advanced Hawkeye are:

• A completely new radar featuring both mechanical and electronic scanning capabilities

• Fully Integrated “All Glass” Tactical Cockpit

• Advanced Identification Friend or Foe System

• New Mission Computer and Tactical Workstations

• Electronic Support Measures Enhancements

• Modernized Communications and Data Link Suite

These and other new developments incorporated into the E-2D ensure:

• True 360-degree radar coverage provides uncompromised all-weather tracking and situational awareness

• Open architecture compliant, commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS)-based hardware and software enables rapid, cost-wise technology refresh for consistent leading-edge mission tools

• A true FORCEnet enabler – A force multiplier through network enabled capability.

• Multi-mission flexibility ranging from command and control through missile defense to border security

Photo credit: U.S. Navy

E-2 print
This print is available in multiple sizes from – CLICK HERE TO GET YOURS. E-2C Hawkeye 2000 VAW-112 Golden Hawks, NG600 / 165820 / 2015

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Dario Leone

Dario Leone

Dario Leone is an aviation, defense and military writer. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviation Geek Club” one of the world’s most read military aviation blogs. His writing has appeared in The National Interest and other news media. He has reported from Europe and flown Super Puma and Cougar helicopters with the Swiss Air Force.

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