The Navy recently awarded an $83 million contract for e-CASS development, production and testing. The AN/USM-636(V) Consolidated Automated Support System (CASS) is the US Navy’s standard automatic test equipment family. It provides intermediate, depot and factory level support, both ashore and afloat, for testing all Navy electronics, from aircraft to ships and submarines.
CASS has been around since 1990, and it’s time for an upgrade. The Navy is planning to replace the existing 5 CASS mainframe systems with the next-generation electronic CASS (e-CASS) system. US Naval aviation currently uses 713 CASS stations for testing of aircraft electronics. CASS is also used at the Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA) and in 9 foreign countries.
The new e-CASS system will replace the following 5 CASS mainframe systems:
- Hybrid – The CASS Hybrid station provides the core test capability for general purpose electronics, computers, instruments, and flight controls.
- Radio Frequency (RF) – The CASS RF station provides Hybrid station test capability plus electronic countermeasure, electronic counter-countermeasures, and electronic warfare support measures; and fire control, navigation, tracking, and surveillance radar, and radar altimeter support capability.
- High Power – The CASS High Power station provides RF station capability plus the capability to test high power radar systems, such as the APG-65 and APG-73.
- Communications/Navigation/Interrogation (CNI) – The CASS CNI station provides RF station capability plus communication, navigation, interrogation, and spread spectrum system support capability.
- Electro-Optic (EO) – The CASS EO station provides Hybrid station test capability plus support capability for forward looking infrared, lasers/ designators, laser range finders, and visual systems.
In addition to these systems, the Navy uses a mobile CASS variety called the Reconfigurable Transportable CASS (RTCASS), supplied by Boeing. RTCASS provides a man-portable CASS configuration using COTS hardware and software to meet USMC V-22 and H-1 support requirements as well as to replace mainframe CASS stations at USMC fixed wing aircraft (EA-6B, F/A-18 and AV-8B) support sites.
Lockheed Martin, Boeing, and Northrop Grumman supplies CASS electro-optic subsystem and DRS Technologies provides CASS high-power subsystems. (source www.defenseindustrydaily.com)
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