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General Dynamics Awarded $33M for Photonic Masts
Sep 2011
GROTON, Conn., Sept. 19, 2011 — General Dynamics Electric Boat, a wholly owned subsidiary of General Dynamics, has received a $32.9 million contract modification by the US Navy to procure three backup photonic masts for Virginia-class submarines.

The Virginia-class attack submarine precommissioning unit (PCU) California gets under way from Naval Station Norfolk Sept. 9 to conduct weapons systems acceptance trials. California is the eighth Virginia-class submarine and is scheduled to be commissioned Oct. 29. (Image: Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Danna M. Morris/Released)

Photonic masts — non-hull-penetrating masts that do not extend physically in the control room — have replaced traditional periscopes in Virginia-class submarines. Information is digitally recorded by cameras in the mast, transmitted through fiber optics into the ship, and processed with onboard image processors.

Each mast has an HDTV digital color camera, an infrared camera and a laser range finder.

For more information, visit:  

infrared camera
A camera that uses infrared optics to image and focus infrared radiation onto a recording medium sensitive to its wavelengths.
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