WASHINGTON — Lockheed Martin has won a $54.3 million Army contract to upgrade a day-and-night vision target-acquisition-sensor display screen in the AH-64 Apache helicopter cockpit to color for the first time, the company said Thursday.

The Modernized Target Acquisition Designation Sight/Pilot Night Vision Sensor (M-TADS/PNVS) has long been "the eyes" of the Army's attack helicopter, but with the new upgrades pilots will be able to identify on the displays targets in infrared and in color at further distances through an additional field of view with a higher resolution with the new upgrades to the displays.

The 35 Modernized Day Sensor Assembly (M-DSA) kits and spares will also include a new laser-pointer marker and a multi-mode laser with eye-safe lasing capability.

Under the contract, Lockheed will not only furnish M-DSA kits to the Army but also to and to the Qatar Emiri Air Force. Production will take place at Lockheed's Orlando and Ocala, Florida, facilities through March 2019.

"These enhancements enable faster situational understanding for aircrews and more accurate coordination with ground troops," Matt Hoffman, the M-TADS/PNVS director at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control, said. "With the Apache expected to be in service through 2045, we're continuing to invest in sensor upgrades, such as the M-DSA, to ensure aircrews have the capabilities they need to address emerging threats."

Lockheed has delivered more than 1,350 M-TADS/PNVS systems to the Army and other countries.

Email: jjudson@defensenews.com

Twitter: @JenJudson

Jen Judson is an award-winning journalist covering land warfare for Defense News. She has also worked for Politico and Inside Defense. She holds a Master of Science degree in journalism from Boston University and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Kenyon College.

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