Rafael announces new sale of Litening and Reccelite pods

Rafael Advanced Defense Systems has announced today that it has been awarded a contract for an undisclosed amount to supply 5th generation Litening and RecceLite airborne electro-optical systems to and undisclosed air force for installation on to an undisclosed combat aircraft.

Corporals Aaron Jorgenson and Joshua Newbon, both Avionics Technicians from No 3 Squadron, walk back to the flightline after removing a Litening Pod from an F/A-18 Hornet during Exercise Bersama Padu 2010. (Photo: Commonwealth of Australia)

Integrated with Rafael’s pods, the unidentified jet type will now have “combat-proven, stand-off capabilities” using the Litening 5 multi-spectral airborne targeting pod. The company adds that the Litening 5 delivers real-time, forward-looking infrared (FLIR+SWIR) and day HD color camera imagery, with its high-resolution sensors and effective EO/IR design enabling operations at “significant stand-off ranges”.

It adds that Litening 5 allows the operation of all types of air-to-surface smart weaponry, such as laser-guided, GPS-guided and EO/IR imaging-guided munition.

Meanwhile, Rafael’s RecceLite ISR system allows the user aircraft to “perform target search using advanced tools and other smart algorithms at the interpretation ground station, for efficient detection, tracking and sensor-to-shooter closure.”

A Litening sensor pod on the wing of a No. 37 Squadron C-130J Hercules aircraft at RAAF Base Richmond (Photo: Commonwealth of Australia)

It adds that intelligence data gathered is relayed in real-time and mission execution can be performed in “near-real-time”. The Litening pod is integrated on 25 different platforms in use with 27 global air forces while RecceLite has been delivered to 13 customers world-wide, the latter in Europe, the Far East and South America.

The users of the Litening include the Royal Australian Air Force, which is using them on board its F/A-18A/B Classic Hornet fighters and C-130J Hercules airlifters, the latter on a trials basis.

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Kym Bergmann is the editor for Asia Pacific Defence Reporter (APDR) and Defence Review Asia (DRA). He has more than 25 years of experience in journalism and the defence industry. After graduating with honours from the Australian National University, he joined Capital 7 television, holding several positions including foreign news editor and chief political correspondent. During that time he also wrote for Business Review Weekly, undertaking analysis of various defence matters.After two years on the staff of a federal minister, he moved to the defence industry and held senior positions in several companies, including Blohm+Voss, Thales, Celsius and Saab. In 1997 he was one of two Australians selected for the Thomson CSF 'Preparation for Senior Management' MBA course. He has also worked as a consultant for a number of companies including Raytheon, Tenix and others. He has served on the boards of Thomson Sintra Pacific and Saab Pacific.


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