Last Updated: 11/28/2012*
It’s 11 p.m., and a Stryker armored vehicle rolls through a dusty town, its electro-optical infrared sensor peering down each darkened street.
In one alley, the Stryker’s crew can clearly see a man sweeping his stoop with a broom –no threat to this patrol. But down another street lies danger: the EO/IR sensor shows a crowd is shielding a Kornet missile launcher. While remaining safely out of range of the weapon, the crew sends an image of the threat to a nearby squad.
On today’s battlefield, the best sensors are increasingly marking the difference between victory and defeat: between meeting the enemy and making a deadly mistake. Raytheon engineers have been working to make those sensors lighter, faster, tougher and more effective.
"Our troops are getting equipment with improved detection ranges and the ability to operate effectively day or night," said Jeff Miller, vice president of combat and sensing systems at Raytheon's Network Centric Systems business.
BattleGuard Integrated EO/IR with weapon station
Recent advances in Raytheon's sensor technology include:
- Next Generation Electro-Optical/Infrared (EO/IR) equipment, which stays alert through the worst weather conditions and is the same size and footprint as second-generation sensing technology. It’s an easy upgrade that can be installed on multiple platforms.
- Boomerang, a shooter detection system that pinpoints incoming small arms fire using passive acoustic detection and computer-based signal processing. When mounted on a vehicle, the system can operate when the vehicle is stationary or moving. Boomerang uses a single mast-mounted, compact array of microphones to locate incoming fire.
- BattleGuard, a weapons station for combat vehicles that features Raytheon’s latest sensors. Troops can see twice as far as with competing technology. The system also features stowed, ready and active weapon modes, meaning troops can look at civilians without pointing their weapons at them. That’s an important feature for modern missions
- JLENS, a system of twin aerostats that gives a 24-hour-a-day blanket of protection at the fraction of the cost of surveillance planes. The name stands for Joint Land Attack Cruise Missile Defense Elevated Netted Sensor System, but the system can track all types of air, land and sea targets up to 350 miles away. Previously, warfighters often had only seconds to make decision about incoming threats. With JLENS, they now have minutes.
- Advanced Distributed Aperture System, Raytheon’s famous “glass ball” technology for helicopters. The system uses multiple, high-resolution infrared sensors mounted around the helicopter to create a wraparound view in a helmet-mounted display. Pilots can see through dust, debris, bad weather and even the helicopter itself.
- Three-Dimensional Sound systems, which deliver alerts from the direction of enemy fire. Different sounds tell pilots what kind of weapons are coming their way.
These advanced products give warfighters better images and more information. It’s the basis of Raytheon’s sensor strategy: taking core technology and applying it in multiple domains to save time, money and lives.
"Raytheon is giving the warfighter revolutionary and cost-effective capabilities that will give them a decisive edge over the enemy," said Mark Rose, program director for JLENS.
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