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02 Jun 15. Changing, integrating or upgrading sensors on a military aircraft can be an expensive, time-consuming and complex endeavor. Northrop Grumman Corporation’s (NYSE: NOC) new OpenPod(TM) sensor system, unveiled at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., overcomes these challenges by making it possible for maintainers to swap sensors in theater. The OpenPod(TM) system consists of line-replaceable units and a set of interchangeable sensors that can be swapped out in minutes. Enabled by open architecture principles, OpenPod(TM) is the first of its kind to accommodate a range of sensors with one pod.
“The battlespace can change quickly. OpenPod(TM) keeps the complexity of the mission in mind by allowing warfighters to match the sensors to the mission quickly, giving them flexibility they have never had before,” said James Mocarski, vice president, Airborne Tactical Sensors business unit, Northrop Grumman. “When you have OpenPod(TM), you can have IRST, you can have targeting, you can have communications without having to acquire multiple pods. That gives our customers a significant affordability advantage.”
OpenPod(TM) will be available with targeting and IRST packages at launch, followed by communications, LIDAR, 5th-to-4th generation communications and other options in the future. Because the pod allows for sensor changes without modifications to the aircraft or mission computer, OpenPod(TM) can be upgraded independent of the aircraft. That allows for more rapid and affordable upgrades and integration of new technologies. OpenPod(TM) is the next step in sensor evolution for users of the AN/AAQ-28(V) LITENING family of advanced targeting systems. Any LITENING pod can be converted to an OpenPod(TM), so operators can take full advantage of their existing investments, training and operational experience.
01 Jun 15. Czech military eyes Israeli 3D radars. The Czech Ministry of Defense has unveiled plans to acquire 3-D mobile radars from Israel’s Elta Systems. The country’s government aims to spend about 5.9bn krona (US $240m) on the planned acquisition. Should the Czech government and Elta fail to reach an agreement, potential competitors include defense companies from the US, France and Sweden, local business daily E15 reported. Under the plan, the Israeli company is to fulfill the work in cooperation with local defense company Retia to ensure that at least 40 percent of the contract is handled by the Czech defense industry, according to a Retia company representative. Delivery of the radars is expected to begin in 2017. Logistics support will be provided to the Czech Armed Forces until 2040. Last year, Czech, Slovak and Hungarian defense companies announced a project to jointly supply new 3-D radars to their armies with the aim of replacing Soviet-built P-37 radars. The goal would be to enhance the interoperability of the three armed forces, and to ensure the radars are impenetrable to Russian military. However, Prague eventually decided to acquire new radars on its own. Elta Systems is a subsidiary of Israel Aerospace Industries. Retia develops, manufactures and modernizes radars, missile systems, C4I systems, recording systems, UWB localization and communication systems, the company said. (Source: Defense News)
01 Jun 15. The U.S. State Department has approved the possible sale to Japan of four E-2D Advanced Hawkeye Airborne Early Warning and Control aircraft built by Northrop Grumman Corp, a deal valued at around $1.7bn, the Pentagon announced on Monday.
The deal includes the aircraft, four engines, radars and other equipment, the Defense Security Cooperation Agency said in a notification to lawmakers.
Congress now has 15 days to block the sale, but such action is rare since sales are carefully vetted with lawmakers before they are formally notified.