On Thursday last week (Sept 30) the Pentagon awarded two competitive contracts for the delivery of advanced targeting pods for U.S. Air Force fighters. The Air Force will continue the procurement of two types of pods under the Advanced Targeting Pod – Sensors Enhancement (ATP-SE) program – the AAQ-33 Sniper from Lockheed Martin and AAQ-28(V) Litening – from Northrop Grumman and Israel’s Rafael. The total spending on the two systems over the life of the program could reach US$2.3 billion. The service is seeking to acquire an estimated 275 systems. At present, the contracts awarded to each of the two teams amount about $23 million each.