Lockheed Martin Receives $147 Million Contract for Sniper Advanced Targeting Pods
ORLANDO, Fla. -- Lockheed Martin has received a $147 million contract from the U.S. Air Force for additional Sniper Advanced Targeting Pods (ATPs). The Sniper ATP provides critical long-range, positive identification of targets and coordinates self-generated video down-link (VDL) to remotely-operated, video enhancement receiver ground terminals.
Sniper ATP's advanced target identification capabilities enhance the Warfighter's ability to detect and analyze ground targets while dramatically decreasing the risks posed by enemy air defenses.
"The Sniper pod serves a vital role in the Air Force's ongoing fighter and bomber operations in theater," said Ken Fuhr, director of Fixed-wing Targeting Programs at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. "We are continuously driving new features and capabilities into the system to keep Sniper ATP the most advanced targeting pod in the world."
A new feature in development is a missionized two-way data link system. Lockheed Martin has a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement with the Air Force Research Lab to integrate Quint Networking Technology into the Sniper pod. This will enable a two-way data link between other Sniper ATP-equipped aircraft and ground parties, dramatically shortening targeting, close air support and damage assessment timelines.
For joint force coordination, Sniper ATP has successfully demonstrated real-time, streaming video via its VDL to the Army Apache helicopter using the Video for Unmanned Aerial Systems Interoperability Teaming-2, or VUIT-2 system.
Other planned improvements include a low-light-level, high-definition TV, enhanced forward-looking infrared and algorithm upgrades. Each system advancement is supplied in a single line replaceable unit design for flexible flightline upgrade capability.
Designed, developed and manufactured by Lockheed Martin, the Sniper ATP also provides essential non-traditional intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance using high-resolution, mid-wave FLIR and TV sensors, which operate in conjunction with a dual-mode laser, permitting eye-safe operation and precise geo-location in urban environments.
For target coordination, the Sniper pod possesses a laser spot tracker to see other laser spots from air and ground assets, an infrared marker visible to night vision goggles and a VDL to ground forces. Sniper ATP provides real-time targeting for JDAM, small diameter bomb and precision-guided weaponry, as well as employment of laser-guided weapons (Laser JDAM and Laser Maverick) against moving targets. The Sniper ATP is the only targeting pod fielded that incorporates meta-data in every frame of video. The date/time stamp and coordinate information further ensures accuracy throughout intelligence and command and control functions.
Deployed in theater since January 2005, Sniper ATP also has been selected by nine international air forces and coalition partners.
Sniper ATP is currently flying on the U.S. Air Force and multinational F-16, F-15, B-1, F-18, Harrier, A-10, B-52 and Tornado aircraft. Its common software and hardware interface design enables users to "plug and play" across services and multiple platforms, providing a common software and hardware configuration across aircraft fleets.
Headquartered in Bethesda, MD, Lockheed Martin is a global security company that employs about 140,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The corporation reported 2007 sales of $41.9 billion.