ITT picks Kopin display for Army night vision goggles

TAUNTON, Mass., 29 Nov. 2005. Kopin Corp. today announced the award of a production contract from ITT Industries Night Vision for display subsystems to be used in the new generation of night vision equipment for the soldier, the U.S. Army's Enhanced Night Vision Goggle (ENVG) system.

TAUNTON, Mass., 29 Nov. 2005. Kopin Corp. today announced the award of a production contract from ITT Industries Night Vision for display subsystems to be used in the new generation of night vision equipment for the soldier, the U.S. Army's Enhanced Night Vision Goggle (ENVG) system.

The ENVG allows for improved mobility and situational awareness by providing the solider with the combined images from an image intensifier and a thermal imager. The thermal scene is displayed on Kopin's high-resolution, ruggedized CyberDisplay SVGA microdisplay, and the Kopin display subsystem optically combines this image with the output of an image intensifier.

While the image intensifier amplifies available light and allows soldiers to "turn night into day," it cannot see through battlefield smoke or fog and has limitations in extremely low light conditions such as those seen in tunnels and deep caves. However, the thermal camera is able to operate in any lighting condition, day or night and is able to see through smoke and fog.

The ENVG allows the soldier to select the preferred imaging technology (image intensified or thermal) based upon ambient conditions, or combine them both in a precise optical overlay. By combining the strengths of both technologies into one unit, the ENVG allows soldiers to complete their missions more safely and more effectively in any battlefield environment.

"This order expands the position of Kopin's technology as the microdisplay of choice for the U.S. military, reflecting both the capabilities of our display technology and the talents of our people," said Dr. John C. C. Fan, president and chief executive officer of Kopin Corporation. "Our design team modified and optimized our standard CyberDisplay product specifically for this critical application. We are committed to supporting the Department of Defense and proud to be in a position where our world-class display technology can help protect those who protect us."

In April 2005, ITT announced the award of a sole-source, multi-year contract for the ENVG program from the U.S. Army. The program has a potential estimated value to ITT of $560 million during a five-year period. Qualification units are scheduled to be delivered by the end of 2005, with extensive testing to be completed by the second quarter of 2006.

The Army's Program Executive Office Soldier (PEO Soldier) -- the organization tasked with developing, producing, fielding and sustaining everything that the soldier wears, carries and operates -- is committed to fielding the ENVG and has recently placed the first production order with ITT for units to be fielded in 2006.

"Our engineers have been working side-by-side with the ITT engineering team for several years to provide an optimized display solution for the ENVG," stated Michael J. Presz, Kopin's vice president of Government Programs. "While earlier prototypes utilized lower resolution displays, the ENVG has been redesigned to use our new SVGA (800 x 600 resolution) AMLCD. This display was originally developed with funding by the Army in support of the Land Warrior Program, and modifying it for use in the ENVG Program is an added bonus. ITT has chosen us as the display supplier because the performance and reliability of our displays are unmatched by competing technologies."

ITT Industries Night Vision, based in Roanoke, Va., is the world's leading developer, producer and supplier of Generation 3 image intensifier technology for U.S. and allied military forces as well as federal, state and local law enforcement.

ITT Industries, Inc. supplies advanced technology products and services in key markets including: fluid and water management including water treatment; defense communication, opto-electronics, information technology and services; electronic interconnects and switches; and other specialty products. Headquartered in White Plains, N.Y., the company generated $6.8 billion in 2004 sales. For more information, see www.itt.com.

Kopin is the largest U.S. manufacturer of microdisplays to the consumer electronics, industrial and military markets and the world's largest merchant supplier of heterojunction bipolar transistor (HBT) wafers for power amplifier integrated circuits. Since introducing its award-winning microdisplay technology in 1999, Kopin has shipped more than 15 million CyberDisplays for digital cameras, personal video eyewear, camcorders, thermal weapon sights and head-mounted displays. The company also has shipped more than 500,000 HBT wafers, which have been integrated into more than one billion wireless handsets and into WiFi, VoIP and high-speed Internet data transmission systems. Kopin's technology is protected by more than 200 global patents and patents pending. For more information, see www.kopin.com.

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