15 Feb 12. Lockheed Martin’s Target Sight System (TSS) for the AH-1Z Cobra attack helicopter deployed operationally for the first time with the 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) as part of the Amphibious Squadron 5. Lockheed Martin’s TSS is the fire control system for the AH-1Z Cobra. The TSS integrates sensors to provide aviators with superior imagery through a highly stabilized sensor suite that includes a laser designator, color TV camera and third-generation, mid-wave, forward-looking infrared sensor with advanced image processing. The Naval Surfac e Warfare Center awarded the initial TSS production contract in March 2008, followed by a second production contract in June 2010. Lockheed Martin delivered the first TSS in June 2009, and recently began early delivery of low-rate initial production units. Production is expected to continue through 2018. TSS is produced at facilities in Ocala and Orlando, Fla. TSS is one of several high-performance stabilized targeting systems designed, manufactured, tested and supported by Lockheed Martin. The company’s fielded solutions for fixed- and rotary-wing aircraft include the Modernized Target Acquisition Designation Sight /Pilot Night Vision Sensor for the U.S. Army, the Sniper Advanced Targeting Pod for the U.S. Air Force and the AN/AAQ-39 targeting system for the U.S. Air Force Special Operations Command.
09 Feb 12. Rafael pursues Iron Dome exports. Rafael Advanced Defence Systems is in advanced talks with South Korea about the possible sale of the Iron Dome counter-rocket system, a senior Rafael executive said on 6 February. Lova Drori, Rafael’s executive vice-president for marketing, told IHS Jane’s that talks are continuing with South Korea about a possible deal to export Iron Dome and with a number of European NATO members that are interested in using the system to defend forward bases in conflict zones. (Source: Jane’s Defence Industry)
16 Feb 12. Raytheon Company’s Joint Land Attack Cruise Missile Defense Elevated Netted Sensor System (JLENS) recently completed Demonstration Test 1 (DT-1), proving its ability to track targets and integrate with fire control and tactical data link systems. A series of demonstration tests were conducted at the Utah Training and Test Range from early November to mid-December 2011. The test included tracking moving ground and surface water targets. Providing a joint service capability, the JLENS system consists of two tethered 74-meter aerostats. One aerostat elevates a surveillance radar to 10,000 feet, providing 360-degree coverage out for hundreds of miles over land and sea. The other aerostat elevates a fire-control radar. Each of the aerostat platforms has the capability to integrate other communications and sensor systems. During live-fire tests later this year, JLENS will demonstrate its ability to detect airborne threats and transmit targeting data to surface-based air and missile defense systems that will engage test targets. In the meantime, testing continues in Utah and at White Sands Missile Range, N.M.
16 Feb 12. The 500th Dual Mode Brimstone missile has been delivered by MBDA at its UK-based factory at Lostock, England. This unique air to surface missile has won many plaudits from the Royal Air Force for its ability to attack and destroy targets with precision in difficult urban environments with low collateral damage that no other air force was able to achieve during the Libyan conflict. The British Minister for Defence Equipment, Support & Technology, Peter Luff was present at the production line with the UK Managing Director of MBDA Steve Wadey to thank the MBDA employees for their dedication during the Libyan campaign and for the example they set as the UK’s core complex weapons production facility.
14 Feb 12. In July 2012, UN member states will meet to negotiate a legally binding international instrument governing the transfer of conventional arms: the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT). The ATT initiative represents an