Rafael Wins Contract to Supply Foreign Air Force with Litening 5, RecceLite Systems

The Israeli company's 5th-generation electro-optical pods are expected to provide the customer with a significant force-multiplier for cutting-edge mission performance

A British Typhoon fighter equipped with Rafael's Litening system. Courtesy of Gareth Burgess

Israel's Rafael Advanced Defense Systems announced May 21 that it has been awarded a contract to supply 5th-generation Litening and RecceLite airborne electro-optical systems for installation on a combat platform of an undisclosed air force. 

Integrated with Rafael's pods, the jet will now have combat-proven, stand-off capabilities using the Litening 5 multi-spectral airborne targeting pod. 

The Litening pod is in use by 27 air forces and carried by over 25 platforms globally, including F-16, F-15, AV8B, F-18, F-4, F-5, A-10, B-52, Jaguar, LCA, AMX, Mirage 2000, Tornado, Typhoon, MiG21, MiG27, M346, KC390, Gripen, and Sukhoi 27 & Sukhoi 30. 

Litening 5 delivers real-time, forward-looking infrared (FLIR+SWIR) and day HD color camera imagery. Its high-resolution sensors and effective electro-optical/infrared (EO/IR) design ensure reliable operation at significant stand-off ranges. Litening 5 allows the operation of all types of air-to-surface smart weaponry, such as laser-guided, GPS-guided and EO/IR imaging-guided munition. The pods have logged over 2 million flight hours, with more than two-thirds in contingency operations worldwide. 

With the RecceLite ISR system, the attack aircraft will be able to perform target search, using advanced tools and other smart algorithms at the interpretation ground station, for efficient detection, tracking and sensor-to-shooter closure. 

Using its advanced ISR, image processing, and artificial intelligence, the system achieves optimal data-exploitation at the ground station, of intelligence data relayed in real-time and mission execution in near-real-time. 

RecceLite has been delivered to 13 customers worldwide and integrated onto various aircraft, including the F-16, F-18, Jaguar, AMX, Tornado, Typhoon, Gripen, M-346 and others. It is used by air forces in Europe, the Far East and South America.

Guy Oren, VP, head of Rafael's Electro-Optical Systems Directorate, said "We are proud of this contract and we look forward to cooperating with our customer to provide them with a significant force-multiplier for cutting-edge mission performance. Our EO/IR systems are part of a comprehensive aerial package spanning from air-to-air missiles, to EW, air-to-surface munition, communication and more."


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