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19 Aug 15. Pulsar announced the newest addition to the already successful Recon line of digital night vision monoculars, the Recon X870. The Pulsar Recon X870 digital night vision monocular features a 5.5x magnification and 752×582 camera resolution for a crisp, detailed view. The new Recon is designed with an intuitive easy-to-use interface, packed into a lightweight and durable composite housing while featuring the highest sensor resolution of all Recon models.
Jeff Murray, vice president of sales-national accounts, said, “The new Pulsar Recon X870 is a revolutionary digital night vision monocular. The Recon X870 was designed for a wide array of uses and activities from hunting to surveillance and provides users the ability to spot objects at over 300 yards. The features built into these compact units are what set them apart from anything else on the market. Nothing in its class can compare to the resolution, range, features, and price.”
Equipped with an OLED display with 640×480 resolution, the X870 can even be used in colder environments down to -13 F. The Recon X870 model is designed with a 915nm laser IR illuminator that is invisible to the naked eye, an ideal application for law enforcement professionals.
19 Aug 15. Lockheed Skunk Works designing next-gen U-2 spy plane. Lockheed Martin Skunk Works is designing a next-generation high-altitude, long-endurance (HALE) surveillance airplane, known internally as RQ-X or UQ-2, as an optionally-manned successor to the U-2 and Northrop Grumman RQ-4 Global Hawk. U-2 programme officials told reporters at the Skunk Works headquarters in Palmdale, California, that its engineers have been mulling designs for stealthy HALE platform that would combine the best of the U-2 and its unmanned rival, the Global Hawk.
The advanced research and development arm of Lockheed is essentially pursuing an improved version of the U-2, which is powered by the same General Electric F118 engine and optimised to fly at 70,000ft or higher. It would carry many of the same sensors, since those are already calibrated for use at that altitude. The biggest difference will be the aircraft’s low-observable characteristics.
“Think of a low-observable U-2,” says Scott Winstead, Lockheed’s U-2 strategic development manager. “It’s pretty much where the U-2 is today, but add a low-observable body and more endurance.”
The disclosure comes on the 60th anniversary of the U-2 programme, and as stagnant defence budgets force the Pentagon to choose between retiring the U-2 or Global Hawk. The US Air Force has no formal requirement for a U-2 successor, nor has it released a time frame for when it might start pursing a next-generation HALE platform. But U-2 programme director Melani Austin says Skunk Works see a future need and would be remiss to not have something in development. (Source: Defense News Early Bird/Flight Global)
18 Aug 15. Barents Russia gets two new giant missile warning radars. The new radars are of the fifth generation missile warning system, named Voronezh-M. The radars will detect incoming nuclear missiles from the Norwegian Sea, the Barents Sea and the Arctic. From before, similar radars are in operation along Russia’s southern border, in the regions of Leningrad, Krasnodar, Kaliningrad and Irkutsk. With construction starting now, the two Voronezh-M radars in northern Russia will be in operation in 2017, reports TASS.
“Work has started on building the radar stations in the district of Vorkuta and in the Murmansk region,” says Colonel Viktor Tymoshenko, Chief of staff of Russia’s anti-missile warning centre interviewed by TASS.
Vorkuta is also in the Komi republic, but the actual location of the radar is just outside the town of Pechora, some nine hours by train southwest of Vorkuta. An older generation of Russia’s early warning radars are already