Firefighting aircraft will be more capable of performing accurate "water bombing" with the help of very advanced Israeli developed electro optical payloads.
It's nice to know that this advanced and ripe technology can be used for such a purpose in addition to its other uses, mainly as a locator of targets for sophisticated weapon systems.
The importance of dropping the water or fire retardants on the exact point in the burning area to achieve the best results spurred the adaptation of the payloads to their new mission.
The Tamam division of Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), has sold an adapted version of one of its best selling payloads for the new mission.
According to Shaul Shahar, general manger of Tamam, the accurate drop of water or fire retardants is essential when large fires are fought from the air. "This is especially important when the fire tanker has scooping capabilities like the CL-415 or the Beriev -200," says Shahar.
The Multi-purpose Optical Stabilized Payload (MOSP) is equipped with a choice of sensors, including second or third generation FLIR, colour CCD with high power telephoto zoom lens and a laser rangefinder/designator.
The MOSP can be equipped with a dual-channel video link that enables simultaneous transmission of both FLIR and CCD images via data link.
According to Shahar, the MOSP supplies the pilots with the exact location of the fire even in difficult conditions.