JSTARS shine on

It has been a turbulent decade for the USAF’s E-8C Joint STARS fleet. Khalem Chapman explores the platform’s history, failed replacement programmes and uncertain future.

Getting some gas – an E-8C Joint STARS operated by the 116th ACW pulls away from a 459th Air Refueling Wing (ARW) KC-135R Stratotanker in May 2012.
USAF/MSgt Jeremy Lock

Northrop Grumman’s E-8C Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System (Joint STARS or JSTARS) is the result of a combined US Air Force/US Army programme that sought a
platform able to detect, track, identify, and support the attack of enemy ground units beyond the forward operating area of allied forces.

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