The US Air National Guard (ANG) has completed testing of the Lockheed Martin-built SpectIR transportable infrared search and track (IRST) pod, as part of a risk reduction effort for the US Air Force (USAF) and the US Navy.
During the live fire flight test, the SpectIR pod successfully tracked the target on the first pass while providing weapons-quality cue with weapon employment.
Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control business SpectIR senior programme manager Paul Hey said that the recent test has validated the system’s ability to provide warfighters’ with enhanced situational awareness, survivability and target engagement in electronic attack environments.
The SpectIR system provides long-range, passive infrared detection and tracking of airborne threats in a transportable configuration in dense threat environments by incorporating IRST capabilities into a pod form.
The system features high-angle accuracy, and will enhance aircrews’ ability to track and engage closely spaced targets at maximum range.
The system can be used either as a standalone or as in combination with other sensor data to enhance situational awareness, ensuring first-to-see, first-to-shoot capability for the crew.
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The survivability and lethal capabilities of the system enable target detection in advanced electronic attack and heavy radio frequency/infrared countermeasure environments while achieving superiority in both offensive and defensive counter-air roles.
Capable of operating in a wide variety of flight regimes, the system delivers robust performance against a wide variety of targets while ensuring immunity to electronic detection and RF countermeasures.
Lockheed and Boeing are developing a transportable IRST pod for the F-15C in collaboration with the USAF.
The system will also be used to support various platforms including US Navy F/A-18 E/F as well as the F-16 and other platforms.