Boeing Begins Production of F/A-18E/F Distributed Targeting System
ST. LOUIS, Feb. 1, 2012 -- Boeing [NYSE: BA] today announced that it has started production of the new Distributed Targeting System (DTS) for the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet strike fighter.
DTS provides enhanced targeting capability for the Super Hornet. It is part of the U.S. Navy’s F/A-18E/F Network Centric Warfare Upgrades program and the F/A-18E/F Flight Plan, which will ensure that the Super Hornet remains ahead of emerging threats in coming decades.
The Navy granted approval for Low Rate Initial Production of DTS following successful completion of initial operational assessment flight testing at Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake, Calif., and Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Md., between September 2010 and March 2011. Air Test and Evaluation Squadrons VX-31 and VX-23 conducted the tests.
“Distributed targeting is going to be a real game-changer for Super Hornet aircrews,” said Kevin Fogarty, Boeing F/A-18 and EA-18G Mission Systems director. “DTS increases pilot and aircrew situational awareness and precision targeting when engaging air-to-ground targets, in part by using geo-registration technology.”
Geo-registration technology compares images taken from tactical sensors with an onboard imagery database to produce highly accurate target coordinates.
DTS is on schedule to achieve Initial Operational Capability in January 2013.
The Boeing Super Hornet is a multirole aircraft, able to perform virtually every mission in the tactical spectrum, including air superiority, day/night strike with precision-guided weapons, fighter escort, close air support, suppression of enemy air defenses, maritime strike, reconnaissance, forward air control and tanker missions. Boeing has delivered more than 480 F/A-18E/Fs to the U.S. Navy. Every Super Hornet produced has been delivered ahead of schedule and on budget.