EA-18G Growler Airborne Electronic Attack Aircraft
The EA-18G Growler is the fourth major variant of the F/A-18 family of aircraft that combines the proven F/A-18F Super Hornet platform with a sophisticated electronic warfare suite. Built to replace the EA-6B Prowler, the Growler is the first newly-designed electronic warfare aircraft produced in more than 35 years. The aircraft also retains all of the F/A-18E/F’s multi-mission capabilities with its validated design and the capability to perform a wide range of enemy defense suppression missions.
The EA-18G Growler, an Airborne Electronic Attack aircraft integrates the latest electronic attack technology, including the ALQ-218 receiver, ALQ-99 jamming pods, communication countermeasures, and satellite communications.
Along with the electronic attack suite, the Growler also features the APG-79 Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar.
The first Growler test aircraft went into production in October 2004 and made its first flight in August 2006.
The extensive commonality between the F/A-18E/F and the EA-18G Growler, as well as its flexible platform, gives the Growler much-needed room for future upgrades and growth.
The first production aircraft was delivered June 3, 2008 to Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) 129, the Growler Fleet Replacement Squadron, at Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Wash. Initial operational capability and full rate production followed in fall 2009. In 2010, three squadrons, VAQ-132, 141 and 138, transitioned from the Prowler to the Growler and were declared safe-for-flight.
The Scorpions of VAQ-132 deployed to Iraq as an expeditionary squadron from NAS Whidbey Island, in the fall of 2010. The Shadowhawks of VAQ-141 deployed in the spring of 2011 aboard the USS George H. W. Bush.
|Point Of Contact|
Naval Air Systems Command
F/A-18 and EA-18G Public Affairs Officer
47123 Buse Road, Bldg 2272
Patuxent River, MD 20670-1547
|Primary Function: Airborne Electronic Attack (AEA|
|Contractor: The Boeing Company|
|Date Deployed: First flight in October 2004. Initial operational capability (IOC) in September 2009 with first deployment for VAQ-132 in November 2010.|
|Unit Cost: $67 million|
|Propulsion: Two F414-GE-400 turbofan engines. 22,000 pounds (9,977 kg) static thrust per engine|
|Length: 60.2 feet (18.5 meters)|
|Height: 16 feet (4.87 meters)|
|Wingspan: 44.9 feet (13.68 meters)|
|Weight: Weight empty: 33,094 lbs Recovery weight: 48,000 lbs|
|Ceiling: 50,000 feet|
|Range: Combat: 850+ nautical miles with two AIM-120, three ALQ-99, two AGM-88 HARM, two 480 gallon external fuel tanks|
|Armament: Two AIM-120, two AGM-88 HARM, three ALQ-99|
|Last Update: 30 June 2011|