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Thursday, July 11, 2013

L-3 to develop imaging radar prototype to give AC-130 gunship more punch in bad weather

AC-130 SpectreMilitary radar experts at the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) in Arlington, Va., are looking to the L-3 Communications Corp. Electron Devices segment in San Carlos, Calif., to design and flight test an imaging radar system that enables U.S. aircraft to engage maneuvering ground targets through clouds dust and other obscurants.

DARPA on Monday awarded a $2.6 million contract to L-3 Electron Devices for the Video Synthetic Aperture Radar (ViSAR) System Design and Development program, which seeks to develop a prototype radar that can detect and track moving targets through clouds with the same ability that current infrared targeting systems have in clear weather.

The goal of the DARPA ViSAR program is to overcome weather limitations by developing an active radar sensor that enables the U.S. Air Force AC-130 gunship and other U.S. aircraft to image, track and target maneuvering ground targets through clouds, dust or other obscurants.

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