OWEGO, N.Y., 24 Nov. 2009. Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] won a $17.8 million contract from the U.S. Air Force for a software upgrade that integrates communications and situational awareness capabilities into the A-10C close air support fighter.
The software upgrade will provide improved pilot vehicle interface and enhanced weapons delivery. Also included with the upgrade are software baselines for the helmet-mounted cueing system that increase situational awareness through improved visual cues for the pilot, and the lightweight airborne recovery system that integrates search and rescue capability.
"This software upgrade is another critical achievement in the continued modernization of a proven weapon system. Armed with these latest enhancements, A-10C pilots can more quickly access the information they need to prevail on the battlefield," says Roger Il Grande, A-10 program director at Lockheed Martin Systems Integration in Owego, N.Y.
The software upgrade is the third in an annual series planned for the A-10 and is scheduled for release in May 2011. The earlier two upgrades were also performed by Lockheed Martin; the first was fielded on schedule in May 2009 and the second is on target for release in May 2010.
The upgrades will be integrated in Lockheed Martin's A-10 Systems Integration Lab in Owego. The lab is used by engineers and pilots to prototype software and hardware upgrades for operational validity before flight, to fully integrate aircraft avionics modifications to reduce development risk and cost, and to aid in pilot and maintainer familiarization of newly-deployed systems. Lockheed Martin leads an A-10 industry team that includes Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio, Texas and Northrop Grumman in St. Augustine, Fla.