The AN/TPS-80 G/ATOR is a highly expeditionary, three-dimensional, short-to-medium-range multi-role radar designed to detect low-observable, low-radar cross section targets such as rockets, artillery, mortars, cruise missiles, and unmanned aircraft systems. The G/ATOR is being developed and fielded in three blocks, and will be employed by the Marine Air Ground Task Force (MAGTF) across the range of military operations. These blocks will cover both ground and aviation missions and will replace three in-service legacy radars and the functionality of two retired systems. Air Defense/Surveillance Radar (AD/SR) G/ATOR Block 1 (GB1) will provide capabilities in the Air Defense and Air Surveillance mission areas. Ground Weapons Locating Radar (GWLR) G/ATOR Block 2 (GB2) will address Counterfire Targeting missions. The Expeditionary Airport Surveillance Radar (EASR) G/ATOR Block 4 (GB4) will address Air Traffic Control (ATC) missions. GB4 capabilities will be defined as part of subsequent G/ATOR acquisition planning, and being deferred at this time.
G/ATOR consists of three major subsystems: the radar equipment group (REG), the communications equipment group (CEG), and the power equipment group (PEG). The REG is an integrated radar and trailer combination towed behind a medium-tactical vehicle replacement (MTVR). The CEG is a communications and radar control system transported by the armored M1151A1 High-Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV). The PEG is a pallet assembly containing a tactical generator, cables, and ancillary equipment transported on the bed of the MTVR. The REG, CEG, and PEG without prime movers are considered mission-essential equipment and are rapidly deployable via heavy-lift helicopters, tilt-rotor aircraft, KC-130s, or ground vehicles during the initial stages of operations. This system can augment sea-based air-defense sensors and command and control capabilities. G/ATOR will provide naval and joint forces with an expeditionary radar and cruise missile detection capability that extends landward battlespace coverage. When fully fielded, the diverse capabilities of G/ATOR and the many warfighting functions it supports will make it a highly valued asset to the MAGTF commander. The Marine Corps intends to field a total of 45 units in support of GB1 and GB2.
G/ATOR’s expeditionary, multi-role capabilities represent the next generation of ground radar technology. This radar will provide crucial enhancements to warfighting capabilities for Marine Corps and joint force commanders as it possesses greater range, accuracy and detection capabilities against current and emerging threats. The G/ATOR will also provide increased mobility, reliability and improved situational awareness with the ability to act as the landward extension of sea-based sensors to enable strikes against inland targets.
The AN/TPS-80 G/ATOR program obtained a successful Milestone C decision in March 2014 and subsequently awarded a LRIP contract to Northrop Grumman in October 2014 for six systems. Two follow-on contracts were awarded to Northrop Grumman as follows: a GB2 contract in August 2015, and an additional LRIP contract in August 2016 for Lots 3, 4 and 5 consisting of nine systems.