ORLANDO, Fla., Sept. 15 (UPI) -- The first overseas support facility for Sniper Advanced Targeting Pods is being opened in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia by Lockheed Martin.
The repair-capable facility, designed to support ATPs used by the Royal Saudi Air Force, is being established in partnership with AEC, a local company focused on electronics manufacturing, system integration, and repair and maintenance services.
Lockheed Martin said the facility is part of an existing offset agreement between it and the Saudi Arabia Economic Offset Committee.
"Providing in-kingdom support with AEC ensures that Sniper ATP capability is readily available for the RSAF," said John Rogers, F-15SA program manager at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. "AEC is a strategic partner in the Kingdom, and we look forward to finding additional opportunities to work together."
The Sniper ATC provides pilots with target identification, autonomous tracking, and weapons guidance from standoff ranges. It is used by the U.S. Air Force and 16 countries.
Lockheed said its personnel will train AEC technicians to perform maintenance on Sniper ATP line replaceable units. Future AEC support will include managing logistics and completing product upgrades.
"AEC is proud to be associated with Lockheed Martin," said Dr. Ghassan Al Shibl, president and chief executive officer of AEC. "AEC is committed to achieving Saudi government objectives by building a first-class capability relying substantially on a Saudi workforce.
"I would like to express my appreciation to Lockheed Martin for its vision in establishing significant local content on the Sniper ATP."