The US Navy has tabbed Boeing to begin engineering and manufacturing development (EMD) of an infrared air-to-air targeting system for the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet fighter.
The US$135 million contract for the Infrared Search and Track (IRST) sensor represents a key element of the Navy’s Block II Super Hornet flight plan. The IRST is scheduled for Initial Operating Capability in 2016, Boeing says.
The passive, long-range sensor can track multiple targets based on their infrared emission, allowing it to pick up targets equipped with radar-jamming equipment.
Boeing is partnered on the IRST with Lockheed Martin, which is producing the sensor, and GE Aviation, which is supplying the fuel tank assembly that will contain the sensor.