Northrop Grumman [NOC] yesterday said it was awarded a $9.3 million firm-fixed-price contract by Naval Air Systems Command to provide Gen II mission computers for the H-1 Upgrade helicopter program.
The work under the order will be to supply Gen II mission computers and trays for the H-1 Upgrade program’s Lot 10 production aircraft. Deliveries are expected to be completed by January 2015.
Dual mission computers are the heart of Northrop Grumman’s Integrated Avionics System (IAS) that powers H-1 helicopters’ glass cockpits.
The mission computers provide centralized control of the IAS, interface with the tactical moving map, and display both situational awareness and health monitoring information. Additionally, the IAS and mission computers feature an open, modular architecture that allows for system upgrades and insertion of new technologies.
"The high-performance mission computers have proven their reliability and superior value supporting ongoing missions such as Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan," said Ike Song, vice president of Northrop Grumman’s Situational Awareness Systems business unit. "They offer advanced computing and video processing capabilities to help ensure pilot safety."
The mission computers will be used onboard UH-1Y and AH-1Z helicopters that make up the Marine light attack helicopter squadrons. Critical mission data is shown on four displays, reducing workload and increasing aircrew situational awareness.
The Navy’s H-1 Upgrade program involves replacing aging AH-1W and UH-1N helicopters with upgraded UH-1Y and AH-1Z aircraft. The program provides significant improvements in commonality, reliability and maintainability. This reduces life cycle and training costs, and decreases the logistics footprint for both aircraft. Additionally, the upgraded helicopters have 100 percent software commonality through Northrop Grumman’s IAS and the same operational flight program. Both the UH-1Y and AH-1Z are in full-rate production by Bell Helicopter [TXT].