26 May 10. The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) awarded Lockheed Martin a $3.93m contract to develop a rifle-scope attachment to enhance soldiers’ marksmanship capabilities. The Dynamic Image Gunsight Optic or DInGO system will enable soldiers to accurately view targets at varying distances without changing scopes or suffering a decrease in optical resolution. The system will enhance soldiers’ ability to accurately hit targets at a range of between three and 600 meters. DInGO automatically calculates the range with a low power laser rangefinder, digitally zooms in on it and accounts for environmental conditions such as wind using sensors built into the scope. It then projects the bullet’s point-of-impact calculated from the embedded ballistics computer.
“Current scopes are optimized for a single target range, impacting soldiers’ effectiveness and survivability when engaging targets at different distances during a single mission,” said Dan Schultz, vice president and general manager of Lockheed Martin’s Mission Systems & Sensors Ship & Aviation Systems business. “DInGO will solve this problem, significantly increasing soldiers’ ability to rapidly reconfigure optics for use from short to long ranges and improving marksmanship capabilities for all soldiers.”
DInGO is based on Lockheed Martin’s One Shot Advanced Sighting System, which utilizes similar precision engagement technology to automatically transmit crosswind information to a long-range sniper’s scope and modify the crosshairs to display exactly where the bullet will strike. DARPA awarded Lockheed Martin an 18-month, $9.7m contract in 2008 to integrate One Shot’s new crosswind measurement technology into a prototype spotter scope – a small telescope that is carried by sniper teams and is used to bring far-away objects into close view. During tactical field tests in December 2009, snipers were able to engage targets twice as quickly and increase their probability of a first-round hit by a factor of two using the One Shot technology at distances beyond 1,000 meters. The nine-month Phase 1 contract, with options for additional phases, calls for Lockheed Martin to develop the DInGO system for use on the M-4 and M-16 automatic rifles. Work will be performed at Lockheed Martin’s Akron, Ohio, site, which has a strong track record for developing laser technology for ship and airborne infrared countermeasures, communications, wind correction and active sensing.
24 May 10. Raytheon Company’s SeaRAM Anti-ship Missile Defense System completed two blast test vehicle launches aboard the USS Independence (LCS 2). Designed to validate the structural integrity of both the weapon system and the ship, the launches clear the way for SeaRAM’s live-fire testing on LCS 2 later this year.”SeaRAM met all test objectives and demonstrated the system’s critical at-sea firing capabilities,” said Al Steichen, Raytheon’s SeaRAM program manager. “SeaRAM is fully integrated with the Independence’s combat management system and will provide a proven, highly lethal self-defense capability.” SeaRAM is a low-cost spiral development of Raytheon’s combat-proven Phalanx Block 1B radar and Rolling Airframe Missile, the latter produced jointly by Raytheon and RAMSYS of Germany. Intended to enlarge a ship’s self-defense keep-out range against anti-ship missiles and fixed- and rotary-wing aircraft, SeaRAM replaces Phalanx’s M61A1 20 mm gun with an 11-round RAM launcher. “SeaRAM’s self-contained defense capability leverages Phalanx’s reliable multispectral sensors and weapon control capability with the demonstrated lethality of RAM,” said Steichen. “It marks the beginning of the next generation of close-in weapon systems.”
25 May 10. BAE Systems, along with partner General Dynamics Armament and Technical Products, delivered to the U.S. Navy the first automated magazine for the 155-mm Advanced Gun System (AGS) being developed for the DDG 1000 (Zumwalt) Destroyer Program. The magazine is the