Photo Above: Helios 2B is the second-generation French recce satellite. It weighs 4.2 tons. It will orbit the earth at a sun-synchronous orbit at an altitude of 700 km and is designed for useful mission life of five years. The French military reconnaissance satellite was built by EADS Astrium, its high resolution imaging payload was developed by The Thales Alenia. Photo: CNES

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Elbit Systems to Equip Australian BattleGroups with Advanced C3 Systems

Elbit Systems was awarded a major contract for the supply of command, control and communications system for the Australian Defence Forces over a period of three years. The value of the new contract is over US$298 million. The Israeli company has been selected by the Defence Materiel Organisation (DMO) following a world-wide competitive open tender. (Read More...)

Elbit Systems Unveils UAS Intelligence Management Center

Elibt IMSElbit Systems is developing multi-sensor fusion and display system, integrated in a new 'Intelligence Management Center' (IMC), enabling users of unmanned systems to control missions involving multiple sensors. Elements of the new center have already been ordered by several customers, to enhance operational management of UAV assets, improve training and development of operational doctrine, and better integrate UAVs with other missions. (Read More...)

Israeli Tactical Video Link, Helmet Displays Improve Situational Awareness U.S. Marines Gunships

U.S. Marine Corps AH-1W attack helicopters will significantly improve the situational awareness of gunship crews. Two systems being delivered by Elbit Systems of America provide these enhancements - the new Tactical Video Data-Links and Helmet Display & Tracker system (HDTS). Following the upgrade, to be performed in 2010, air crews flying these advanced Cobra gunships will be able to access real-time imagery obtained from UAVs, aircraft targeting pods and ground based sensors. (Read More...)

Airborne Communications Relay Could Become Primary Mission for Tactical UAVs

Traditionally, the communications relay was considered a secondary mission on a platform deployed on other missions, resulting in reduced performance and availability. However, with the introduction of lightweight, robust and autonomous platforms, capable of deployment from austere and unprepared sites, UAVs can now perform this mission, close to the forward units. Unlike the costly electro-optical sensor package, often exceeding the cost of the aerial platform itself, an airborne relay payload can be produced at a low cost, resulting in a reasonably priced mission platform, that can be operated by signals units of Army or Marine brigades. (Read More...)

Prophet Enhanced – a New Tactical SIGINT for the U.S. Army

The industry team led by General Dynamics C4 Systems has been working since May 2009 integrating the Prophet Enhanced Signal Intelligence (SIGINT) into the new Panther Medium Mine Protected Vehicle, (MMPV). So far the GDC4 led team has been awarded $74 millions as part of the Prophet Enhanced six-year program which has a total value of $866 million. The production of the first MMPV based system was completed in December 2009. (more on Prophet...)

French Helios 2B Reconnaissance Satellite Launched

The newest French reconnaissance satellite Helios 2B was launched December 18, 2009 after a delay of several days. The satellite was launched on an Ariane 5 GS rocket oriuginally scheduled for launch on Flight 193 on December 9, 2009 from the French Guiana space centre at Kourou.

F-35 Electro-Optical Targeting System Enters Low-Rate Production

The first production configuration of the Electro-Optical Targeting System (EOTS) was recently delivered for integration onto the F-35A aircraft. The systems are embedded into the F-35’s fuselage using innovative faceted sapphire window that reduces drag and preserves the aircraft low observability (stealth) characteristics. The company expects to produce more than 3,000 units, with production ramping up to deliver up to 200 units per year. (read more...)

U.S. Army Continues Support for Flexible Displays

The U.S. Army has awarded the Flexible Display Center (FDC) at Arizona State University (ASU), and Universal Display Corp, a display provider a development contract worth $650,000 to continue development and deliver flexible active-matrix PHOLED display prototypes to the U.S. Army. "Our goal is to move this flexible display technology forward with cutting-edge research, and hopefully to see this made available for use in soldier equipment," said U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command spokesman Robert DiMichele.

ITT Wins $9.7 Million to Supply "Netted Iridium" Tactical Radio Handsets

The ITT Corporation has received a $9.7 million U.S. Navy contract to supply 1,450 Iridium-based handheld tactical satellite communication devices for use by U.S. forces in Iraq and Afghanistan. The wireless transceivers are providing push-to-talk communications utilizing the Iridium satellite network. The devices, designated Distributed Tactical Communications Systems - Radio Only (DTCS-RO), will be delivered by March 2010. (read more...)

Sagem Acquires Optics Specialist Optics 1 to Bolster U.S. Presence

Sagem has finalized the acquisition of Optics 1, Inc., a U.S. based company specialized in opto-mechanics, electro-optics, and the design, production and integration of precision optical systems for the commercial and defense markets. The acquisition, carried out through Sagem’s Swiss subsidiary Vectronix AG, will enable Sagem to expand its business and develop a leadership position in the U.S. market, especially for defense applications. Sagem already operates in the U.S. optronics market via Vectronix, Inc.

Turkey Orders Sniper Targeting Pods for its F-16s

Lockheed Martin Corp. was awarded a $118 million contract to provide Sniper Advanced Targeting Pods and Low Altitude Navigation and Targeting InfraRed for Night (LANTIRN) systems for Turkey. The systems are to be employed on the Turkish Air Force F-16s.

Next-Generation FBCB2 on the Test Bench

Northrop Grumman Corporation has delivered the next version of Force XXI Battle Command Brigade and Below (FBCB2) software to the U.S. Army to begin formal government testing. The new software, called Joint Capabilities Release (JCR), provides a common FBCB2 platform solution for both the Army and U.S. Marine Corps. (read more...)

B-1B to Get an Upgraded Targeting Software

Boeing has received a follow-on $23 million U.S. Air Force contract to introduce a software upgrades for laptops controlling the Sniper targeting pods on B-1B Lancer bombers. The upgraded capability will improve the bomber's precision attack accuracy and target identification capability, enabling better engagement of stationary and moving targets. (read more...)

Laser JDAM Integrated with German Tornados

EADS Defence & Security (DS) and the Bundeswehr Technical Centre WTD 61 jointly have successfully tested the Laser JDAM weapon (GBU-54/B) as part of the ongoing combat efficiency improvement programme ASSTA (Avionics Software System Tornado Ada) for the German Air Force Tornados. Currently in the third phase, the ASSTA program is being implemented with Tornado aircraft in service with Germany and Italy. The adaptation of the Laser JDAM for the Tornado makes the German Air Force the first export customer for the weapon, paving the way for future integration with German Air Force Eurofighters. (read more on Laser JDAM)

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