The Boeing Company [NYSE: BA] has delivered the first Joint Helmet-Mounted Cueing System (JHMCS) to the Royal Australian Air Force, increasing the number of international customers using the system to 10.
The JHMCS also completed first flights with the Swiss and Finnish air forces' Boeing-built F/A-18 Hornets. First flights in Canadian F/A-18s are scheduled for September.
"The praise U.S. Air Force and Navy pilots have for this system, which significantly increases combat capability, is attracting the interest of international customers," said Phil King, Boeing JHMCS program manager. "The proven success of JHMCS in the field has resulted in a steady increase in customer demand."
The first fleet aircraft delivery of JHMCS to the Royal Australian Air Force occurred May 23 in Williamtown, New South Wales, Australia. Boeing Australia and the Hornet Industry Coalition, a collaborative arrangement between Boeing, BAE Systems and L-3 Communications of Canada, will equip 71 Australian F/A-18s with JHMCS by 2008.
First flights took place in Swiss F/A-18Cs on May 30 and Finnish F/A-18C/Ds on June 2 and 7. Switzerland and Finland operate 35 and 63 systems, respectively.
Pilots first used the JHMCS operationally in Operation Iraqi Freedom. The system gives flight crew members the ability to rapidly acquire and designate a target simply by looking at it. By placing an aiming cross, projected on the helmet visor, over the desired target and pressing a button, pilots can quickly and easily aim weapons and sensors to designate and attack airborne or ground targets. JHMCS also displays aircraft altitude, airspeed, gravitational pull, angle of attack and tactical information on the visor to increase crew members' situational awareness.
Since 2000, Boeing has contracted for more than 2,000 systems. The company is the prime contractor and integrator for JHMCS. Vision Systems International, based in San Jose, Calif., is the major subcontractor.
A unit of The Boeing Company, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is one of the world's largest space and defense businesses. Headquartered in St. Louis, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is a $30.8 billion business. It provides network-centric system solutions to its global military, government, and commercial customers. It is a leading provider of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance systems; the world's largest military aircraft manufacturer; the world's largest satellite manufacturer; a foremost developer of advanced concepts and technologies; a leading provider of space-based communications; the primary systems integrator for U.S. missile defense; NASA's largest contractor; and a global leader in sustainment solutions and launch services.