Elbit Systems’ US subsidiary has received a contract from the Defence Logistics Agency to upgrade the US Air Force (USAF) Block 30 and Block 50 F-16 Wide Angle Conventional (WAC) Head-Up Display (HUD) units.
Under the five-year $38.5m indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity contract, the company will manufacture the reliability and maintainability (R&M) electronic module assemblies (EMA) for all F-16 WAC HUDs, having received $3m of initial orders to date.
The WAC HUD provides enhanced situational awareness by projecting critical flight and mission-related data onto a transparent surface in front of the pilot, which is usually displayed inside the cockpit on an instrument panel.
The target data transmitted by a ground observer is automatically channeled to the HUD through the help of an improved data modem (IDM) that is equipped on the aircraft, which is also capable of transmitting images from a range of sources, including unmanned aircraft.
Equipped with advanced technology, the WAC HUD offers overall component reduction, lessens power consumption, improves mean time between failures (MTBF) and increases the mission availability of aircraft through enhanced reliability scale.
The compact multi-role Lockheed-Martin-built F-16 fighter jet has a high level of manoeuvrability, a speed of 2,124km/h and can be equipped with air-to-surface missiles, air-to-air missiles and stand-off land-attack missiles.
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The USAF F-16 aircraft are scheduled to be equipped with Boeing’s joint helmet-mounted cueing system (JHMCS), which is presently in full-rate production.
The Block 50 modification of the aircraft also includes integration of colour cockpit displays, a new electronic warfare suite, advanced weapons and sensors, and more powerful engines.
Currently, more than 2,000 F-16 fighter jets are in service with the USAF and another 2,000 are operational in 25 other countries.