Business

May 20, 2013

Raytheon’s forward looking infrared technology marks 50 years of helping military forces ‘own the night’

Raytheon marked its five-decade heritage as the maker of Forward Looking Infrared (FLIR) technology that has allowed U.S. and international defense forces to track objects in total darkness, often from long distances.

Over the span of 50 years, the devices have shrunk in size and weight – from several hundred pounds to less than two – while providing ever clearer images and more accurate data.

Their history began in 1963 when Texas Instruments’ Defense Systems and Electronics business (later acquired by Raytheon) created a capability to essentially allow the war fighter to see at night. By the end of the 1960s, the first product had been developed and deployed on board a C-47 fixed wing aircraft, nicknamed “Puff the Magic Dragon.”

From that first platform, and after five decades and hundreds of thousands of devices sold, Raytheon is the world’s top supplier of FLIR technologies that support members of the U.S. Departments of Defense and Homeland Security, as well as international allies. The devices are used on land, air and sea, and in space, to provide intelligence, surveillance, navigation and targeting capabilities.

“Before FLIR, the military’s ability to go out and conduct operations in total darkness was significantly limited. Our forces couldn’t see beyond the naked eye,” said Jerry Powlen, vice president of Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Systems in Raytheon’s Space and Airborne Systems business. “What started as a concept in the early 1960s has become a valuable asset to the warfighter in nearly every major U.S. conflict.”

During the Gulf conflicts, FLIR gave U.S. ground forces an advantage on the battlefield, allowing troops to “own the night,” and not only spot the enemy but also recognize friendly forces. The company has consistently evolved the technology. The next generation will provide a common high-definition view across the battlefield, and high definition resolution and magnification at much greater stand-off distances. This enhancement will help increase war fighter survivability and effectiveness, enabling our servicemen and women to identify and determine threats faster and with more precision.

Raytheon’s FLIR technology is deployed across multiple platforms – from satellites, fixed-wing aircraft, unmanned aircraft systems, helicopters, tanks and military vehicles to hand-held thermal weapon sights and missile systems.

 




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Raytheon acquires Tucson-based Sensintel, Inc.

Raytheon has acquired privately-held Sensintel, Inc., a leading provider of unmanned aircraft systems solutions to the intelligence and special operations markets. Located in Tucson, Ariz., with approximately 50 employees, Sensintel will become part of Raytheon Company’s Missile Systems business. The transaction is not expected to materially impact Raytheon’s sales or earnings in th...
 
 
Boeing photograph

Boeing Maritime Surveillance Aircraft ready for demonstration flights

Boeing photograph The Boeing Maritime Surveillance Aircraft program is ready for customer demonstration flights, having completed the baseline ground and flight testing of the aircraft mission systems. The Boeing Maritime Surve...
 
 

Pratt & Whitney concludes PurePowerÆ geared turbofan engine partnering

Pratt & Whitney and Kawasaki Heavy Industries Ltd. met recently to commemorate the signing of a risk and revenue-sharing collaboration agreement for KHI to provide key hardware modules for Pratt & Whitney’s PurePower Geared Turbofan engines. Pratt & Whitney is a division of United Technologies Corp. Pratt & Whitney currently has 10 worldwide GTF collaboration...
 

 

U.S. Navy approves F/A-18 Super Hornet IRST system for production

The F/A-18 Super Hornet infrared search and track system, developed and integrated by Boeing and Lockheed Martin, received approval from the U.S. Navy to enter low-rate initial production. The IRST system consists of Lockheed Martin’s IRST21 sensor, the GE Aviation FPU-13 Fuel Tank Assembly and the Meggitt Defense Industry Environmental Control unit. The system demonstrated...
 
 

DRS Technologies to upgrade electronic warfare E/A-18 mission for U.S., Australia

DRS Technologies Inc., a Finmeccanica Company,†announced Jan. 22 that it has been awarded access to an indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract for the production and delivery of up to 180 Joint Tactical Terminal-Receivers for U.S. Navy and Australian EA-18G aircraft. The contract is valued up to $12 million and will include JTT-R production engineering, test set racks, fixtures...
 
 

DRS Technologies’ groundbreaking laser designating gimbal completes first flight test

DRS Technologies Inc., a Finmeccanica Company, announced Jan. 21 that it successfully performed the first airborne demonstration of its GS205-XRZ laser designating gimbal. At less than six inches in diameter and weighing less than nine pounds, the GS205 is one of the smallest stabilized, light-weight and fully qualified targeting systems on the market. During its...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>