The reprogrammable AN/APG-73 radar responds to new threats and accommodates future modes and weapons through software changes rather than hardware retrofit.
The APG-73 is an all-weather, coherent, multimode, multiwaveform search-and-track sensor that uses programmable digital processors to provide the features and flexibility needed for both air-to-air and air-to-surface missions. It is an upgrade of the APG-65 that provides higher throughputs, greater memory capacity, improved reliability, and easier maintenance without associated increases in size or weight.
Phase II of the APG upgrade completed development. It incorporates a motion-sensing subsystem with reconnaissance software, a stretch waveform generator module, and a special test equipment instrumentation and reconnaissance module. With these enhancements, the F/A-18 aircraft will have the hardware capability to make high-resolution radar ground maps comparable with those of the F-15E and the U-2 aircraft, and be able to perform precision strike missions using advanced image correlation algorithms.
The APG-73 is operational in the U.S. Navy F/A-18 C, D, E, and F; the U.S. Marine Corps F/A-18 A+, C and D; and in the air forces of Finland, Switzerland, Malaysia, Australia, and Canada.