The sophistication of the E-2 Hawkeye fighter jet in the film 'Top Gun: Maverick'

The sophistication of the E-2 Hawkeye fighter jet in the film 'Top Gun: Maverick'
Tom Cruise and James Corden prepare to take to the skies in a fighter jet

International Military - The US Navy's newest and most advanced variant, the E-2 Hawkeye airborne warning and control system (AWACS) aircraft makes a cameo appearance in the recently released Top Gun: Maverick. This was even announced for the first time by Lockheed Martin.

Although the E2 Hawkeye has been in service with the US Navy since 1964, its presence in the Tom Cruise-starring film has been a success. "Did you see @northropgrumman E-2D Advanced Hawkeye and Lockheed Martin AN/APY-9 Radar making cameos in the new @topgunmovie?" Lockheed Martin wrote on Twitter on June 2, 2022.

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Quoted from the Eurasian Times, in the initial scene of Top Gun, two F-14 Tomcat fighters are seen scrambling towards an unidentified threat approaching a US aircraft carrier. The American pilots, callsigns Maverick (Tom Cruise) and Cougar, were unable to identify whether it was an enemy fighter jet and if there was more than one aircraft.

Finally, one of the pilots, callsign Cougar had to make a high-speed pass directly above them. This was done to realize that there were two MiG-28s, fictional aircraft described by the Northrop F-5.

Even the command and control center on the carrier had no idea about the threat they faced until the Tomcats visually identified them. In reality, carriers will have the E-2 Hawkeye in the air long before the F-14 is delivered. If the E-2 were used in a real-world scenario, the MiG would be identified from a distance of more than 241 km (150 miles).

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The E2 will also direct the F-14 to intercept two enemy jets and provide deep situational awareness of the entire combat space. Reporting from, the E-2 Hawkeye is an early warning, air command and control aircraft for all weather, to carrier-based tactical combat management.

The E-2 Hawkeye is a twin engine, five crew, high wing turboprop aircraft with a 24-foot diameter radar rotodome mounted in the upper fuselage. Hawkeye has a variety of very advanced features. Those features include airborne early warning, air combat management and command and control functions for Carrier Strike Group and Joint Force Commanders.

Additional missions include coordinating surface surveillance, air interdiction, offensive and defensive counter air control, and close air support coordination. Later, he also played a role in time critical strike coordination, airborne search and rescue coordination and communications relay.

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An integral component of the Carrier Strike Group's air wing, the E-2 uses computerized radar, Friend or Foe Identification and electronic surveillance sensors to provide early warning. Outside of group combat, the Hawkeye's command and control capabilities make it a multi-mission platform.

This is due to its ability to coordinate concurrent missions that may arise during a single flight. These include air strikes, ground troop support, rescue operations, reliable communication management, network between widely dispersed nodes and support for drug interdiction operations.

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