Electronic Warfare Aircraft (EWA) remain critical components across the modern, digital-centric battlespace, actively blinding enemy radar and Command and Control (C2) services through advanced onboard systems. The United States Air Force (USAF) has made extensive use of such platforms for decades and is set to introduce its latest "tool in the toolbox" through adoption of the EC-37B "Compass Call". The EC-37B underwent its Initial Design Review (IDR) in 2017 and is expected to be formally introduced into active service by the USAF during 2024.
The new aircraft succeeds an aging fleet of EC-130H Compass Call platforms in same over-battlefield role, this older aircraft based in the Lockheed C-130 Hercules tactical transport.
While the airframe of the EC-37B is an original design from BizJet-maker Gulfstream Aerospace, the project (and applicable electronics) is headlined by defense industry powerhouse BAe Systems with integration handed by L3Harris (L3 Communications).
At its core, the aircraft is a modified Gulfstream G550 twin-jet and retains its exceptional straightline performance and operating range. The design sees a traditional side-by-side cockpit arrangement set aft of a sloped nosecone assembly, tubular fuselage, and "T-style" tail unit with high-mounted horizontal planes. The mainplanes are low-mounted along the fuselage sides and capped by fuel-saving winglets. A retractable, all-wheeled undercarriage is used for ground-running. The engines are set well-aft in the design along wingstubs positioned behind the passenger cabin (as a noise reduction measure) and ahead of the vertical tail plane.
The G550 series was introduced to market in 2004 and continues to see widespread global use today (2023).
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September 2023 - BAe Systems / L3Harris have delivered the first EC-37B airframe to the USAF.
(OPERATORS list includes past, present, and future operators when applicable)
95.1 ft (29.00 m)
91.9 ft (28.00 m)
51,809 lb (23,500 kg)
96,011 lb (43,550 kg)
+44,203 lb (+20,050 kg)
(Showcased structural values pertain to the EC-37B production variant)
monoplane / low-mounted / swept-back
Design utilizes a single primary wing mainplane; this represent the most popular mainplane arrangement.
Mainplanes are low-mounted along the sides of the fuselage.
The planform features wing sweep back along the leading edges of the mainplane, promoting higher operating speeds.
(Structural descriptors pertain to the EC-37B production variant)
2 x Rolls-Royce BR170 C4-11 non-afterburning turbofan engines developing 15,385lb of thrust each unit.
(Showcased performance specifications pertain to the EC-37B production variant. Performance specifications showcased above are subject to environmental factors as well as aircraft configuration. Estimates are made when Real Data not available. Compare this aircraft entry against any other in our database or View aircraft by powerplant type)
(Not all ordnance types may be represented in the showcase above)
EC-37B - Base Series Designation.
Ribbon graphics not necessarily indicative of actual historical campaign ribbons. Ribbons are clickable to their respective aerial campaigns / operations / aviation periods.
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