The Bahrain Defense Force (BDF) has awarded a contract to Lockheed Martin to supply Sniper advanced targeting pods (ATPs).
The Sniper ATPs to be delivered under the direct commercial sale will be used to equip BDF’s F-16 Fighting Falcon fleet.
Valued at $22.45m, the contract also covers the supply of spares and support equipment for integration.
Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control Fire Control/Special Operations Forces Contractor Logistics Support Services vice-president Paul Lemmo said: "Sniper ATP will provide the BDF with critical targeting capability and will support greater overall mission success.
"With demand for Sniper ATP continuing to grow worldwide, we are committed to maintaining the pod's proven reliability and sustainability."
The Sniper ATP has been designed to detect, identify, automatically track and laser-designate small tactical targets at long ranges.
It also supports employment of all laser and GPS-guided weapons against multiple fixed and moving targets, Lockheed stated.
The ATP, which provides superior air-to-ground and air-to-air targeting capability, is continuously upgraded with the most advanced technology, according to the company.
Lockheed’s Sniper ATP is claimed to be interoperable across multiple platforms, including the US Air Force and multinational F-2, F-15, F-16, F-18, A-10, B-1, B-52, and Typhoon aircraft.
With this contract award, Bahrain becomes the 25th international customer for the programme.
The F-16 Fighting Falcon is a multi-role fighter that is currently in service with 28 customers around the world.
Image: An F-16 Fighting Falcon in flight. Photo: courtesy of master sergeant Andy Dunaway.