Lockheed Martin has been awarded a contract to provide modernised target acquisition designation sight and pilot night vision sensor (M-TADS/PNVS) special repair activities for the Royal Saudi Land Forces Aviation Command’s (RSLFAC) AH-64 Apache attack helicopters.

Awarded by the US Army, the $22m contract covers provision of tools and test equipment to help the customer maintain components of the M-TADS/PNVS system.

Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control M-TADS/PNVS international and fleet support director Mike Taylor said: "Saudi Arabia is the second international customer to establish an M-TADS/PNVS in-country special repair activity

"Providing test and repair capabilities for international customers greatly increases supply availability and maximises Apache mission effectiveness."

"Test and repair capabilities for international customers greatly increases supply availability."

The M-TADS / PNVS, also known as Arrowhead, is an advanced electro-optical fire control system, designed to provide Apache attack helicopter pilots with long-range, electro-optical precision engagement and flying targeting capabilities for conducting day, night and adverse-weather missions.

The system replaces the legacy TADS/PNVS direct-view optics with a new TADS electronic display and control (TEDAC) unit to enable image fusion and also enhance the pilot’s target resolution and situational awareness in the battlefield.

The system has operational with the US Army since 2005 and has proved its capabilities during operations in Afghanistan and Iraq.

More than 1,200 M-TADS/PNVS systems have been delivered to date by the company to the US Army and international customers.

In-country support is expected to be provided to the RSLFAC from the first quarter of this year, and will continue through 2017.

The AH-64 Apache is primarily used for distributed operations, deep precision strikes against relocatable targets, and also for providing armed reconnaissance when required in day, night, obscured battlefield and adverse weather conditions.

Image: An Apache attack helicopter in flight. Photo: courtesy of Lockheed Martin.

Defence Technology