Targeting System

On September 10, Lockheed Martin introduced Advanced EOTS, an evolutionary electro-optical targeting system, which is available for the F-35’s Block 4 development. Designed to replace EOTS, the F-35’s current electro-optical targeting system, Advanced EOTS incorporates a wide range of enhancements and upgrades, including short-wave infrared, high-definition television, an infrared marker and improved image detector resolution. These enhancements increase F-35 pilots’ recognition and detection ranges, enabling greater overall targeting performance.

The F-35 Lightning II Electro-Optical Targeting System provides precision air-to-air and air-to-surface targeting capability (Photo by Lockheed Martin)
The F-35 Lightning II Electro-Optical Targeting System provides precision air-to-air and air-to-surface targeting capability (Photo by Lockheed Martin)

«In today’s environment, threats to our warfighters continue to evolve», said Paul Lemmo, vice president of Fire Control/SOF CLSS at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. «With significant capability and performance enhancements, Advanced EOTS ensures that F-35 pilots can stay ahead of these threats, detecting targets faster and at greater distances while remaining unseen».

Due to its similarity in shape and size to EOTS, Advanced EOTS can be installed with minimal changes to the F-35’s interface. It will be housed behind the same low-drag window, maintaining the F-35’s stealthy profile. Advanced EOTS production will be completed on the current EOTS line.

Advanced EOTS and EOTS are the first sensors to combine Forward-Looking Infrared (FLIR) and Infrared Search and Track (IRST) functionality to provide precise air-to-air and air-to-ground targeting capability. Advanced EOTS was developed jointly through significant Lockheed Martin and supplier investment, with team members drawing on proven experience in electro-optical sensor design and manufacturing.

Lockheed Martin announced delivery of the 100th Electro-Optical Targeting System for the F-35 Lightning II in July 2013 (Photo by Lockheed Martin)
Lockheed Martin announced delivery of the 100th Electro-Optical Targeting System for the F-35 Lightning II in July 2013 (Photo by Lockheed Martin)

 

F-35 Lightning II EOTS

Through EOTS, pilots have access to high-resolution imagery, automatic tracking, IRST, laser designation and range finding, and laser spot tracking at greatly increased standoff ranges. Integrated into the F-35 Lightning II’s fuselage with a durable sapphire window, the low-drag, stealthy EOTS is linked to the aircraft’s central computer through a high-speed fiber-optic interface.

EOTS combines advanced sensor technology, a low-profile sapphire window design and advanced algorithms to provide long-range target recognition, identification and tracking. In the IRST mode, EOTS locates and tracks multiple airborne threats at extended ranges, ensuring high lethality and survivability.

EOTS incorporates proven technology and advances in optics, stabilization and processing. Its modular design and ease of repair make it simple to support and ensure two-level maintenance.

An F-35 Lightning II employed a Guided Bomb Unit-12 (GBU-12) Paveway II laser-guided weapon against a fixed ground tank test target October 29. The F-35's Electro-Optical Targeting System enabled the pilot to identify, track, designate and deliver the GBU-12 on target (Photo by Lockheed Martin)
An F-35 Lightning II employed a Guided Bomb Unit-12 (GBU-12) Paveway II laser-guided weapon against a fixed ground tank test target October 29. The F-35’s Electro-Optical Targeting System enabled the pilot to identify, track, designate and deliver the GBU-12 on target (Photo by Lockheed Martin)

 

Features

  • Rugged, low-profile, faceted window for supersonic, low-observable performance
  • Compact single aperture design
  • Lightweight (<200 lbs/90.7 kg), including window assembly
  • Advanced sensor technology
  • Air-to-surface/air-to-air FLIR tracker and air-to-air IRST modes
  • Modular design for two-level maintenance to reduce life cycle cost
  • Automatic boresight and aircraft alignment
  • Tactical and eye-safe diode-pumped laser
  • Laser spot tracker
  • Passive and active ranging
  • Highly accurate geo-coordinate generation to meet precision strike requirements
The F-35 Lightning II Electro-Optical Targeting System supports all F-35 variants, including the F-35B pictured above (Photo by Lockheed Martin)
The F-35 Lightning II Electro-Optical Targeting System supports all F-35 variants, including the F-35B pictured above (Photo by Lockheed Martin)

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