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Advanced F/A-18 Avionics,
MCDONNELL AIRCRAFT CO ST LOUIS MO
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The FA-18 Hornet is a single-seat, twin-engine aircraft designed to fulfill fighter and light attack roles for the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps, and is being purchased abroad. It has a very capable multimission weapon system, integrated so a single pilot can perform both fighter and attack missions. The challenge of multimission capability is to provide the necessary weapon system elements for effective air-to-air and air-to-surface weapons delivery without requiring a major flight line change each time the aircraft is reconfigured with armament. The answers for the multimission Hornet are digital technology and extensive system integration. High reliability, large scale integrated circuits and microprocessors are employed throughout the digital avionics suite. Integration among avionic subsystems is accomplished over the MIL-STD-1553A dual digital multiplex bus under control of two mission computers. The Hornet has significant growth potential in addition to its present capabilities. Growth capacity includes spare computer memory, electrical power, cooling air and physical space. The production FA-18 configuration is being improved with the addition of current developments such as the Advanced Medium Range Air to Air Missile, Airborne Self Protect Jammer and the Joint Tactical Information Distribution System. A reconnaissance engineering program is under way, which will modify the nose of a test airplane to add cameras and an IR line scanner to the existing high resolution radar and FLIR. An all-environment attack variant is being studied.
APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE