Lockheed Martin Awarded Technology Development Contract for F/A-18E/F Infrared Search and Track Program

ORLANDO, FL, 05/18/2009 -- Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] was awarded a $4 million contract by the Boeing Company for the technology development phase of the F/A-18E/F Infrared Search and Track (IRST) program.

The technology development contract follows a two-year pre-system design and development program in which Lockheed Martin was down-selected as the sole source provider.

"The IRST sensor system will provide next generation capability to counter emerging threats," said Ken Fuhr, fixed-wing program director at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. "The ability to passively detect and track targets in the absence of radar capability is essential to the Warfighter. It's all about seeing the enemy. If you lose sight, you lose the fight."

The F/A-18E/F IRST is a passive, infrared sensor system that enables long-range detection and weapons-quality track of enemy targets under normal and electronic attack environments. The system enhances survivability and lethality in both offensive and defensive counter-air roles.

By engaging the IRST sensor system, Warfighters can overcome electronic attack and maintain unprecedented on-board situational awareness while detecting, identifying and engaging enemy targets at extended ranges. The IRST system's high-angle accuracy provides dramatically improved raid cell count at maximum declaration ranges and target range accuracy. This information can be used alone or fused with other sensor data to further enhance situational awareness.

Lockheed Martin is the only U.S. company with an active IRST production line. The development and production of this system for the F/A-18 E/F opens opportunities in the domestic and international markets. The IRST system is readily adaptable to a wide range of installation options on various platforms.

Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security company that employs about 146,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The corporation reported 2008 sales of $42.7 billion.

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