US-Israeli Deal Provides $17M for LANTIRN-Related Certification
Lockheed Martin Corp. in Fort Worth, TX received a $17 million firm fixed price contract modification to develop a certification process for the System Integration Lab for the Low Altitude Navigation and Targeting Infrared for Night (LANTIRN) terrain following avionics. This effort supports foreign military sales to Israel, and work will be complete March 2009. The Headquarters Aeronautical Systems Center, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, OH issued the contract (F33657-99-C-2048/P00071).
This contract appears to refer to the to the AN/AAQ-13 navigation pod integrated on F-15s and F-16s to improve low-level terrain-hugging flight, rather than the AAQ-14 targeting pod that has largely been supplanted by more modern systems like Lockheed’s Sniper XR, Raytheon’s ATFLIR, and of course the popular Israeli-designed LITENING family.
The AN/AAQ-13 navigation pod provides high-speed penetration and precision attack assistance in all flying conditions, using a terrain-following radar and a fixed infrared sensor to display an image of the terrain in front of the aircraft on a heads-up display of cockpit viewscreen. This helps the pilot maintain a pre-selected altitude above the terrain and avoid obstacles, while flying at high speed and using mountains, valleys and the cover of darkness to avoid radar detection.