US aerospace giant Lockheed Martin has selected Israeli defense electronics company Elbit Systems Ltd.'s (Nasdaq: ESLT; TASE: ESLT) US subsidiary to develop a new cockpit display system for the F-35 stealth fighter. The new panoramic display system will be based on a contact screen containing various flight data, such as moving maps.
It is believed that the process of developing the new display systems will take 1-2 years, and that the system will be installed in every new warplane coming off of the Lockheed Martin assembly line. It is unclear whether the future display system will also be installed in aircraft of this type that have already left the Lockheed Martin assembly line and delivered to the US air force. Five of these planes have already been delivered in recent months to the Israeli air force, which is scheduled to receive 45 more of them in the coming years.
Elbit Systems did not mention the value of the agreement between it and Lockheed Martin on the new development plan in its announcement today. At the same time, defense market sources said that while the agreement did not involve a substantial amount of money, it had other value, such as positioning Elbit Systems as one of the world's leading companies in advanced aircraft display systems.
The company has already developed advanced display systems in the past, including touch screens, for older warplanes, such as the F-15 and F-16. These systems are capable of being interfaced with other warplane systems, and can be adapted to night vision eyeglasses, for training, etc.
Elbit Systems is already involved in the F-35 program. In the framework of its partnership with US company Rockwell Collins, it is supplying these planes with pilot helmets. Defense market sources said that the need to develop new display systems for the aircraft arose because they had been planned long ago, and even though advanced display systems had been installed on them, technological developments in recent years make it possible to install more up-to-date tools on them.
Published by Globes [online], Israel Business News - www.globes-online.com - on June 6, 2017
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