Optoelectronics Briefs

Jan. 1, 2006

Seiler to build optical fire-control units for Army lightweight artillery

Seiler Instrument & Manufacturing Co. in St. Louis won a $5.7 million contract increment in November to build optical fire-control units for the Lightweight 155-mm howitzer program. The Lightweight 155, formerly known as the Advanced Towed Cannon System (ATCAS), replaces all U.S. Marine Corps cannon systems. The U.S. Army will use the system to support light forces and for the light cavalry regiment replacing all of the M198 155 mm towed howitzers. The LW 155, which is deployable to any region and can operate in most weather conditions, will provide close and deep fire support and interdiction fire. The system weighs 9,000 pounds-as light as practical without sacrificing range, accuracy, survivability, and reliability. Work on the optical fire-control units will be in St. Louis, and should be finished by July 2009. This was a sole source contract awarded last March by the Army Tank-Automotive and Armaments Command at Picatinny Arsenal, N.J.

Optical security camera backup system

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The problem with security cameras is they are useless when subjected to dense fog, driving rain, blizzards, or destructive acts. To solve this problem, Fiber Instrument Sales Inc. (FIS) in Oriskany, N.Y., has developed a security system called StrikeZone. To protect against intruders, StrikeZone combines a motion-detection video system with fiber-optic sensors. The sensors provide redundant, backup protection for security cameras in event of poor visibility or destructive acts, such as someone cutting power to a camera or destroying it. Unlike cameras, the fiber-optic sensors can detect intruders without requiring electrical power or external light for imaging. Even if a sensor is destroyed, it will signal an alert and identify the zone in which the event occurred. When either the camera system or the fiber-optic sensors detect an intruder, the StrikeZone system activates an alarm, begins video recording, and sends phone and e-mail alerts to off-site staff. The included software enables staff to check on the status of their facility by viewing video images via the Internet. StrikeZone includes the Fiber Fence Perimeter Monitoring System, which uses fiber-optic sensors that are easily installed along a facility’s existing fencing. StrikeZone is available with either fiber-optic or coax video cameras, or the system can be used to upgrade an existing camera system. Also included are a system-control unit and a digital video recorder with motion-detection capabilities. For more information contact FIS online at www.fiberinstrumentsales.com.

Navy looks to FLIR Systems for shipboard infrared sensors

FLIR Systems Inc. in North Billerica, Mass., won a $49.9 million contract in November for shipboard infrared visual sensor systems. Work will be in North Billerica, Mass., and will be finished by November 2010. Awarding the contract was the U.S. Naval Surface Warfare Center Crane Division in Crane, Ind. For more information contact FLIR Systems online at www.flir.com.

F-35 fighter jet will use cockpit display from L-3 Communications

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The L-3 Communications Display Systems division in Alpharetta, Ga., won a contract from Lockheed Martin Aeronautics in Fort Worth, Texas, to provide the panoramic cockpit display (PCD) subsystem for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) aircraft. The potential contract value over the life of the program is over $200 million. The Lockheed Martin F-35 is a fifth-generation, supersonic, multirole stealth fighter designed to replace aging AV-8B Harriers, A-10s, F-16s, F/A-18 Hornets, and United Kingdom Harrier GR-7s and Sea Harriers. L-3 Display Systems will lead an international team that will design the high-resolution, night-vision-compatible 20-by-8-inch active-matrix liquid-crystal display and redundant display-management computer. The L-3 Display Systems team members are Logic Sistemi Avionici of Milan, Italy; Aydin Yazilim ve Elektronik Sanayii A.S. of Turkey; and Philips Mobile Electronics of Heerlen, The Netherlands. The L-3 Display Systems PCD provides pilot control and display for the major functions of the JSF aircraft, including flight displays; sensor displays; communication, radio and navigation systems and identification systems, and provides the pilot with situational awareness. For more information contact L-3 Display online at www.L-3Com.com/displays.

FLIR offers science-grade infrared cameras

FLIR Systems Inc. in North Billerica, Mass., is offering the ThermoVision SC6000 scientific-grade infrared camera for scientific and research and development applications. The ThermoVision SC6000 offers simultaneous and independent analog and digital output data streams for sending corrected imagery to a video monitor while uncorrected data flows to a digital recording system, for example. The camera has fast and user-adjustable frame rates with a camera output of 50 megapixels per second, analog video during windowing operations, and synchronization features. Optional software and SDK products provide the tools for users to automate data acquisition, advanced analysis, or custom programming for easy integration with other software applications. For more information contact FLIR online at www.flirthermography.com.

DRS Technologies makes sensors for climate satellites

DRS Sensors & Targeting Systems unit in Cypress, Calif., won contracts worth $38 million, including options, to develop advanced infrared sensors for next-generation imaging systems used on future Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites (GOES). Operated and funded by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), under the direction of NASA, these geostationary weather satellites will gather infrared and radar data to help improve routine weather forecasting and provide early warnings for severe weather systems. An initial $8.2 million came from the ITT Industries Inc. Space Systems Division in Fort Wayne, Ind. DRS will design and develop infrared sensors for five flight units supporting next-generation geostationary weather satellites and will provide focal-plane-array (FPA) sensor modules for the GOES Advanced Baseline Imager. DRS-produced infrared sensors and FPAs will be integrated into the Advanced Baseline Imager (ABI) to provide advanced imaging capabilities across the entire range of visible light to long-wavelength regions. DRS’s FPAs provide high reliability and spectral sensitivity for high-resolution images, while recording the position, intensity and wavelength of radiation emitted by spatial objects. For more information contact DRS online at www.drs.com.

Single-photon detection module

id Quantique SA in Geneva, Switzerland, is offering the id100-50 single-photon detection module with 50-micron active area and free space input, and the id100-MMF50 single-photon detection module with multi mode fiber input fiber core of 50-microns. The id100-50 and id100-MMF50 have wavelength ranges of 350 to 900 nanometers, typical timing resolutions of 40 picoseconds, 50-Hz low-dark-count rates, dead time of 45 nanoseconds, and no memory effect. The id100 is based on a silicon APD for photon-counting applications and operating in Geiger mode. Applications include fluorescence and luminescence detection, time-correlated photon counting, single-molecule detection, DNA sequencing, or decay and multiple decay time measurements. For more information contact id Quantique online at www.idquantique.com.

L-3 Communications acquires EOTech

L-3 Communications in New York completed the acquisition of optoelectronics manufacturer EOTech Inc. in Ann Arbor, Mich., for approximately $49 million in cash. The acquired business, renamed L-3 Communications EOTech Inc. (L-3 EOTech), is to add $25 million to L-3’s sales for 2006. L-3 EOTech designs optoelectronic products using advanced laser and holographic technology to enhance optical systems in target acquisition systems. The company produces holographic weapon sights for domestic and international military customers, as well as the homeland-security and law-enforcement markets. L-3 EOTech invented and manufactures the world’s first holographic sighting system to interface with tactical small- and medium-caliber weapon platforms. L-3 Communications provides intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) systems, secure communications systems, aircraft modernization, training, and government services. For more information contact the company online at www.L-3Com.com.

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