Northrop Grumman wins Navy contract for mine countermeasures systems

Oct. 19, 2010
Bethpage, NY -- A $45 million contract for initial production of an Airborne Laser Mine Detection System (ALMDS) has been awarded to Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE: NOC) by the U.S. Navy.

Bethpage, NY -- A $45 million contract for Phase 3 of low-rate initial production of the AN/AES-1 Airborne Laser Mine Detection System (ALMDS) has been awarded to Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE: NOC) by the U.S. Navy. The contract includes the production of four pods, spares, product development and support at a lower cost-per-pod than in previous lots.

The ALMDS pod is mounted on an MH-60S helicopter and detects mines using pulsed laser emissions and streak tube receivers by 3-D imaging, day or night, the near-surface of the ocean while flying over the sea.

The company has delivered five pods to date. The Navy is performing the Developmental Flight Test-IIE (DT-IIE) program from its Surface Warfare Center Panama City Division site in Florida. These tests lead towards Operational Evaluation and the full-rate production decision next year.

"What's critical to the warfighter is the performance of the system. We are confident that DT-IIE results will prove the unique threat detection value and performance of our ALMDS," stated Northrop Grumman's Dan Chang, vice president of Maritime and Tactical Systems.

The Northrop Grumman ALMDS contractor team comprises Arete Associates, (Tucson, AZ), which manufactures the receiver sensor assembly; Northrop Grumman subsidiary, Cutting Edge Optronics (St. Charles, MO), which manufactures the high-powered laser transmitter; CPI Aero (Edgewood, NY) manufacturer of the pod housing; Curtiss Wright/DY4, (San Diego, CA) manufacturer of the central electronics chassis; and Meggitt Defense Systems, (Irvine, CA) which produces the environmental control system.

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About the Author

Stephen G. Anderson | Director, Industry Development - SPIE

 Stephen Anderson is a photonics industry expert with an international background and has been actively involved with lasers and photonics for more than 30 years. As Director, Industry Development at SPIE – The international society for optics and photonics – he is responsible for tracking the photonics industry markets and technology to help define long-term strategy, while also facilitating development of SPIE’s industry activities. Before joining SPIE, Anderson was Associate Publisher and Editor in Chief of Laser Focus World and chaired the Lasers & Photonics Marketplace Seminar. Anderson also co-founded the BioOptics World brand. Anderson holds a chemistry degree from the University of York and an Executive MBA from Golden Gate University.    

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