DRS Technologies to provide thermal imaging equipment to U.S. Army National Guard

DRS Technologies Inc. won an $8 million contract from the U.S. Army’s Research, Development, and Engineering Command’s Acquisition Center at the U.S. Army Garrison Aberdeen Proving Ground in Maryland, on behalf of the National Guard Bureau, to provide thermal imaging equipment.

By Courtney E. Howard

PARSIPPANY, N.J. - DRS Technologies Inc. won an $8 million contract from the U.S. Army’s Research, Development, and Engineering Command’s Acquisition Center at the U.S. Army Garrison Aberdeen Proving Ground in Maryland, on behalf of the National Guard Bureau, to provide thermal imaging equipment.

The work for this contract will be performed by DRS Technologies’ Night Vision Systems Inc. business unit in Allentown, Pa., and Prescott Valley, Ariz. Night Vision Systems engineers will provide the National Guard’s counter-drug program with hundreds of Rugged Miniature Thermal Imagers from the company’s MX-2A product line.

Soldiers and airmen of ground reconnaissance units assigned to help law-enforcement agencies observe and detect illegal drug activity will use the acquired thermal imagers. These reconnaissance units operate along U.S. borders at suspected drug trafficking corridors, drop zones, airstrips, and laboratories, and inspect suspicious aircraft, watercraft, and motor vehicles.

“The MX-2 and MX-2A give the National Guard a high-powered device to enhance America’s continuous fight against drug trafficking,” says James M. Baird, president of the DRS Reconnaissance, Surveillance & Target Acquisition business segment. “It provides a clearer view at a longer distance than most thermal imagers and its versatility will allow guardsmen to use it in a number of ways.”

The MX-2 and MX-2A detect infrared sources such as human beings and vehicles at extended distances in complete darkness and in the presence of smoke, fog, and dust that obstruct traditional night vision technology.

The handheld thermal units are effective during both day and night and offer multiple interoperable capabilities with common thermal imaging systems. The MX-2 and MX-2A can be used as a handheld device, attached to a tripod, or mounted on a weapon.

Night Vision Systems is expected to complete delivery of the thermal imaging equipment by March 2008.

More in Communications