Lockheed Martin and Delft Sensor Systems Sign MOA on Targeting System
FORT WORTH, Texas, July 13th, 1998 -- Lockheed Martin Tactical Aircraft Systems and Delft Sensor Systems of Belgium recently signed a Memorandum of Agreement regarding manufacturing and sale of the Close Air Support Integrated Targeting System (CITS).
CITS is used by air controllers on the ground to provide accurate and timely targeting data to aircraft or other fire support elements. The system consists of the following components: optical sight, electronic compass, laser range finder, a global positioning system (GPS), a lap top computer and a radio.
Lockheed Martin built and patented a prototype CITS system in the late 1980s called "Longbowman" for demonstrations of enhancements to the close air support mission and the F-16. Precise targeting data was passed directly to the aircraft’s fire control system, allowing the pilot to quickly acquire the intended target and consistently accomplish successful first-pass attacks.
A similar system using US-produced components is currently in operation with U.S. Air Force forward air controllers in Bosnia and can transmit data directly to AH-64 Apache helicopters and F-16s equipped with Improved Data Modems. In 1996 twelve sets of CITS were delivered and two squadrons of Block 40 F-16s based at Aviano AB, Italy, were modified in a Quick Reaction Capability project named "Sure Strike." Additional USAF F-16C/Ds and European Participating Air Forces (EPAF) F-16A/Bs with the Mid-Life Update will begin receiving this capability in the near future.
There is also potential to use elements of the system in civilian applications such as law enforcement, maritime surveillance, search and rescue operations, emergency medical services, public utilities, environmental surveys, forestry and construction projects.
Lockheed Martin will provide the system software integration. Delft has developed a Mini-laser Portable Rangefinder (MPR) for forward artillery observation for the Dutch and Belgian armies and plans to use this technology in the CITS. Delft will also produce the night vision electro-optical sight and will integrate the complete system in its factory outside Oudenaarde, Belgium.
This agreement builds on the long-standing relationship Lockheed Martin Tactical Aircraft Systems (and its predecessor General Dynamics Fort Worth Division) has had with Belgian industry since the mid 1970s in coproduction of the F-16. Delft was one of the original companies among the European Participating Industries that produced 517 F-16s for four European countries. Delft produced major components of the F-16 head-up display.
Lockheed Martin Tactical Aircraft Systems is a premier manufacturer of combat aircraft and currently builds the F-16 multirole fighter, portions of the F-22 air dominance fighter and portions of Japan’s F-2 fighter. It is assisting Korean industry in development of the KTX-2 advanced trainer and is leading the Lockheed Martin team in development of demonstrators in the Joint Strike Fighter program.
Delft Sensor Systems is a Dutch-Belgian electronics producer that specializes in military optical equipment and has over 75 years of experience in the defense market. Delft is a market leader in Europe for night vision equipment, head- and helmet-mounted displays and fire control systems.