B-2 Bomber: Early Radar Signature Tests
GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE WASHINGTON DC NATIONAL SECURITY AND INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS DIV
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Low observable aircraft have features that reduce an adversarys ability to detect, locate, track, and shoot at them. Important factors are radar, infrared, optical, and acoustic signatures. Radar signature is a measure of the visibility of the aircraft to radars. The fiscal year 19901991 Defense Authorization Act P.L. 101-189 required the Department of Defense to accomplish certain low observable and flight worthiness tests, known as early Block 2 tests, before more than 15 percent of fiscal year 1990 B-2 procurement funds could be expended. The tests were conducted using the first two development aircraft. The first aircraft was used for radar signature test, and the second aircraft was used primarily for flight worthiness tests. The act also required the Secretary of Defense to certify that the early Block 2 test results were satisfactory. In addition, the act requires GAO to review the Department of Defenses test reports and evaluation documents on the B-2 aircraft program and periodically report on various aspects of the testing, including the adequacy, rigor, and realism of the development and operational tests the tests compliance with the full performance matrix, which identifies minimum conditions that must be used in tests before certain milestones are considered completed and the use of appropriate threat data.
- Radar Countermeasures
- Active and Passive Radar Detection and Equipment