An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Home : News : Article View
NEWS | Feb. 1, 2023

Air Guard Updates 148th Fighter Wing F-16s with Radar Pods

By Audra Flanagan, 148th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

DULUTH, Minn. – Subject matter experts from Air Combat Command, Air Force Materiel Command, the Air National Guard, Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, Air Force Reserve Test Center and the 148th Fighter Wing exercised end-to-end employment of the recently fielded AN/ASQ-236 radar pod and planned how the Air National Guard will operationalize the pods for all ANG F-16 fighter aircraft.

The exercise Jan. 24-26 followed months of modifications to the aircraft, software and support equipment. The 148th Fighter Wing was the first to accomplish all of the requirements for the F16 operational fleet.

The AN/ASQ-236 pod is an externally mounted Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) pod that provides detailed maps for surveillance, coordinate generation and bomb impact assessment. The pod enables combat air forces to geo-locate points of interest day or night in adverse weather. It complements the recent fielding of the APG-83 AESA Fire Control Radar by the 148th Maintenance Group.

After Operation Desert Storm, the U.S. Air Force recognized the need for an all-weather precision geo-location and reconnaissance system with the reliability inherent in AESA radars. The Air Force and Northrop Grumman designed, fabricated and tested the system now known as the AN/ASQ-236. The pod is already operational on the F-15E Strike Eagle.

The 148th Fighter Wing, which flies the Block 50 F-16CM, has been designated as the Air National Guard’s center for excellence for the AN/ASQ-236. 

“As the center of excellence, the 148th will retain expertise in the loading, distribution, training and employment of the AN/ASQ-236 and the capabilities it brings to the warfighter,” said Col. Nathan Aysta, 148th Fighter Wing commander.

The team of experts from operations and maintenance had clear objectives for the week-long visit, including installing the ASQ-236 and validating flight operations on Post-Block F-16s using unique software programs.

“Pilots were trained by AATC subject matter experts on the pod’s software and aircraft systems integration, including troubleshooting and emergency procedures management,” said Maj. Michael Kuzmuk, chief of wing weapons for the 148th Fighter Wing. “Additionally, we trained to and refined best practices for mission planning and post-flight analysis, which included post-mission intelligence distribution.”

Aircraft armament systems specialists, alongside AN/ASQ-236 program managers, installed the pylons for the pod, while fighter aircraft integrated avionics specialists installed the AN/ASQ-236.

Kuzmuk flew the first Post-Block F-16 with the AN/ASQ-236 Jan. 26.

“This effort has been ongoing for many years,” said Annette Becker, F-16 program manager assigned to the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, Hill Air Force Base, Utah. “The continued partnerships, successful execution and effective cross-talk have established courses of action for the Air National Guard to operationalize the AN/ASQ-236.”
 

 

 

Related Articles
The 133rd Security Forces Squadron out of St. Paul, Minnesota, completed initial training for the Skydio X2D drone at Camp Ripley Training Center in Little Falls, Minnesota, Nov. 13-15, 2023. The eight enlisted Airmen are the first National Guard troops to become certified on the X2D drone.
Minnesota Air Guard Security Forces Train on High-Tech Drone
By Sgt. Jorden Newbanks, | Nov. 27, 2023
CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. - The 133rd Security Forces Squadron became the first National Guard unit to certify on the Skydio X2D drone in November.“The strategic plan for the Air Force going forward is to adopt new technology. The...

A new C-130J Super Hercules aircraft arrives at the Kentucky Air National Guard Base in Louisville, Ky., Nov. 6, 2021, ushering in a new era of aviation for the 123rd Airlift Wing. The state-of-the-art transports are among eight the wing will receive over the next 11 months to replace eight aging C-130H aircraft, which were built in 1992 and have seen duty all over the world.
4 Air National Guard Locations Chosen for C-130J Upgrades
By Air Force News Service | Sept. 15, 2023
WASHINGTON - The U.S. Air Force selected four National Guard Airlift Wings as the preferred locations to receive C-130J Super Hercules to replace their aging C-130Hs, pending environmental assessments.Eight C-130J aircraft...

U.S. Airmen with the 182nd Airlift Wing, Illinois National Guard, deplane a C-130 Hercules aircraft to prepare for exercise Air Defender 2023 at Wunstorf Air Base, Wunstorf, Germany, May 31, 2023. Exercise AD23 integrates U.S. and Allied air power to defend shared values, while leveraging and strengthening vital partnerships to deter aggression around the world.
182nd AW Leads C-130 Hercules Operations at Air Defender 23
By Staff Sgt. Paul Helmig, | June 15, 2023
WUNSTORF AIR BASE, Germany – The Illinois Air National Guard’s 182nd Airlift Wing is leading C-130 Hercules aircraft operations at the largest NATO multinational air forces redeployment exercise in history.Air Defender 2023...