L-3 Communications and France's Thales Avionics have finalised their joint venture built around the traffic alert and collision avoidance system (TCAS) assets L-3 acquired last April from Honeywell.

The pair have had a memorandum of understanding in place since before New York-based L-3 bought the TCAS product line for $237 million. The deal will see Thales pay $72 million for a 30% stake in L-3's Aviation Communications &Surveillance Systems (ACSS) unit. L-3 will own 70% and manage and consolidate the Phoenix, Arizona-based venture.

Thales will help L-3 market the joint venture's line of Mode S transponders and airborne collision avoidance systems, targeting international airlines and the military. ACSS plans to develop new surveillance and communications systems for commercial aviation. The companies expect the alliance to be able to provide a complete suite of avionics meeting air traffic management requirements.

This is the latest push by Thales to build its US presence spearheaded by the Thales Raytheon Systems air defence venture.

Source: Flight International