Singapore is planning to equip 60 of its F-16 Block 52 aircraft with Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radars, as part of a $2.43 billion upgrading program. The provider of the new radar, being the main element in the modernization process, has yet to be selected yet.
Both Raytheon and Northrop Grumman are offering AESA radars for F-16s. Raytheon’s radar has recently been selected for a major upgrade in South Korea, to be performed by BAE Systems. Northrop Grumman is providing the radar for a similar upgrade for the US Air Force and for Taiwan, both programs to be delivered by Lockheed Martin.
According to the US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) the upgrade package will also include LN-260 Embedded Global Positioning System/Inertial Navigation Systems (GPS/INS), APX-125 Advanced Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) Combined Interrogator Transponders and Joint Helmet Mounted Cueing Systems (JHMCS). Other equipment included in the upgrade comprise Modular Mission Computers, cockpit multifunction displays, radios, secure communications, video recorders and Mission Planning Systems. The package also includes integration of a number of guided weapons, including AIM-9X Block II air/air missiles, AGM-65G Maverick, GBU-50 and 38 JDAMs, GBU-12 and 49 laser guided bombs and CBU-105 sensor fused weapon dispensers.
Singapore currently operates 60 F-16C/D fighter planes in interceptor (F-16C) and two-seater strike (F-16D Block 52) configurations. Under the upgrade plan both variants will be upgraded to the latest configuration. At the Singapore Airshow 2012 Lockheed Martin launched the F-16V, the latest upgraded or new-manufactured model of the F-16. Singapore has not announced the schedule of the planned upgrade, but the first of the new fighters are expected to be re-introduced to service in 2015.