Thales Develops a New Generation Laser Designation Pod for Rafale, Mirage 2000

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The French Air Force currently operates the Damocles targeting pod.

The French defence procurement agency DGA has awarded Thales with a contract for the development of a New Generation Laser Designation Pod (PDL NG). The contract follows the completion the risk reduction phase Thales has followed through 2013. The development is expected to continue for five years, with initial series production pods expected in 2018.

The PDL NG will provide French Air Forces fighter planes an improved day/night imaging capability, enhancing target engagement capabilities in complex theaters of operations. The new pod will be designed to integrate with both the Rafale and Mirage 2000D fighter aircraft.

The risk-reduction phase, the first step in the development of any programme, confirmed the system’s architecture, its high level of functional integration, reliability and the development schedule.

RAFAEL and Mirage 2000 fighter jets operating with the French Air Force and Navy are currently employed with laser designation pods and DAMOCLES targeting pods, both produced by Thales. The company is now contracted to develop the next generation targeting pod for these aircraft. Photo: French Air Force
RAFAEL and Mirage 2000 fighter jets operating with the French Air Force and Navy are currently employed with laser designation pods and DAMOCLES targeting pods, both produced by Thales. The company is now contracted to develop the next generation targeting pod for these aircraft. Photo: French Air Force