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Improved GPS and Fiber-Optic Inertial Sensor Assembly Developed by Northrop Grumman

Northrop Grumman says its new LN-260 system has an improved GPS and fiber-optic inertial sensor assembly.

"The LN-260 is completely integrated with a 24-channel selective availability/anti-spoofing module -- SAASM -- compliant embedded GPS receiver. The fully integrated, tightly coupled INS/GPS design provides superior performance relative to other embedded INS/GPS systems," the company said in a statement last week.

"The LN-260 inertial navigation system uses an advanced fiber-optic-gyroscope-based inertial sensor assembly that is also successfully deployed on the LN-251, currently in high rate production at Northrop Grumman. Its modular open system architecture allows it to be easily adapted to new applications, to new system requirements and to improve performance of mission equipment and flight control systems," the company said.

"The F-5N/F is a twin-engine, tactical fighter commonly used for adversary combat tactics by the Navy to simulate enemy aircraft in aerial combat training exercises. The F-5N is the Navy's newest variant of the F-5E single-seat fighter while the F-5F is a two seat variant used primarily for pilot training. Internationally, there are more than 1,000 F-5 E/F fighter aircraft in more than 20 countries with inertial navigation systems dating from the early 1970s or the early 1980s," Northrop Grumman said.

"We see a bright future for the LN-260 inertial navigation system," said Gary Mallaley, Northrop Grumman's director for the LN-260 product line. "Flight testing on the F-5 will demonstrate how it can economically fulfill the retrofit needs of both the F-5 and a wide variety of existing U.S. and international military aircraft."

The company said that the first unit of the LN-260 fiber optic gyro-inertial navigation system had already "been delivered to the U.S. Navy for flight testing on its F-5 Tiger II Adversary Fleet Support Fighter."

"Flight testing is scheduled to begin October 2007 and the upgraded F-5 fleet is scheduled to be operational in 2008," the company said.

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