Farnborough Air Show

ITT’s EDO ‘merger’ a chance to diversify

 - July 15, 2008, 9:47 AM

ITT Corporation’s acquisition and integration of EDO figures prominently at the company’s exhibit in Hall 2 Stand A8, where electronic warfare clearly is a major topic. In fact, Chris Carlson, ITT’s director of U.S. business development for electronic systems, declared that the move, completed in December last year, constituted “a merger rather than a take over.” Indeed, he noted that although the EDO elements will in the future trade as ITT Defense Electronics and Services, in working together they offer complementary capabilities to expand the business and bring technology to new markets. By combining portfolios, ITT expects to be a $6 billion defense company by year-end.

The company harbors no plans to dispense with any elements of EDO that do not fit directly with current ITT product lines. On the contrary, Andrew Dunn, ITT’s director of international business development for electronic systems, sees the purchase of EDO as “an opportunity to diversify, while continuing to grow organically.” However, he doesn’t rule out further expansion by acquisition.

Although Farnborough International provides an opportunity to highlight the EDO integration into ITT Defense, the company is also celebrating the growing success of the ALQ-211 family of electronic warfare systems. The (V)9 version is the subject of a recent sale to Turkey as a retrofit for existing F-16 fighters; competition for the sale was fierce, given the policy to encourage sourcing of locally produced equipment. The (V)9 is a (V)4 AIDEWS reconfigured in a pod and represents the latest derivative of the modular and scalable ALQ-211 family of systems. AIDEWS is the version chosen by Chile, Oman, Poland, Pakistan and now Turkey for new-build F-16s.

Following completion of initial operational test and evaluation, full-rate production of the ALQ-211 (V)2 for the CV-22 tiltrotor is under way, as well as the (V)6 for the MH-47 helicopter.

Electronic attack is a new technology in which ITT sees synergy with EDO to develop an ECM (electronic counter-measures) pod employing ray technology. Foreseeing aggressive expansion in this field, Dunn noted that the company has developed an internal ECM fit for the F-16, already ordered by Turkey and specified by Chile, Poland and Pakistan.