Jam Time: Five electrifying facts about electronic warfare
Electronic warfare is the term used to describe how pilots and ground forces use radar, radio signals, decoys and other measures to confuse and thwart the enemy. Many of its most prominent experts belong to the Association of Old Crows, an international professional organization founded in 1964. In honor of the group’s 51st annual symposium, Raytheon presents five interesting facts about the field of electronic warfare.
1. “old crow” is not an insult.
Electronic warfare specialists are called "old crows." The nickname dates to World War II, when the code name for electronic warfare operators was "Raven."
2. Diamonds are an electronic warrior's best friend.
Diamonds conduct heat better than metal, making them ideal for cooling high-powered jammers and radios. Raytheon grows diamond discs like this one for making components.
3. one danger detector was designed on a paper napkin.
Radar warning receivers tell pilots when the enemy is targeting their aircraft. One of the first designs for this lifesaving tool was written on a napkin by Raytheon engineer Stan Hall. Here’s how that happened.
4. This "Little Buddy" will take a bullet for you.
The object trailing the plane in this photo is the AN/ALE-50 towed decoy, more commonly known by its nickname, “Little Buddy.” Missiles hate them. Pilots love them. Learn more.
5. Secure radios have roots in Hollywood.
Frequency hopping – a technique to prevent communications from being intercepted – has its roots in Hollywood’s Golden Age period. Hedy Kiesler Markey -- better known as silver-screen star Hedy Lamarr -- co-patented the technique along with composer George Antheil. They used the roll from a player piano to program the device. Here’s how they did it.
Last Updated: 12/18/2015