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OCCAR Amends Night Vision Capability Contract with Additional Goggles for Germany and Belgium

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OCCAR Amends Night Vision Capability Contract with Additional Goggles for Germany and Belgium

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OCCAR Amends Night Vision Capability Contract with Additional Goggles for Germany and Belgium
OCCAR Amends Night Vision Capability Contract with Additional Goggles for Germany and Belgium (Image: Copyright Belgian Defence, Gert-Jan D´haene)

The Organisation for Joint Armament Cooperation OCCAR signed in Bonn, Germany, a second contract amendment of an existing contract for binocular night vision goggles and in-Service Support on behalf of Belgium and Germany with a Consortium consisting of HENSOLDT Optronics GmbH and THEON SENSORS S.A. The newly signed second amendment includes 3,500 night vision goggles for Belgium, as well as 16,041 night vision goggles and 8,423 Head Mounting Systems for Germany, the latter two are pending approval from German parliament, which the consortium expects to be received at the end of Q1 2024. Moreover, the contract includes an option for up to 25,000 additional night vision goggles each for Belgium and Germany. Thus, both Participating States have the opportunity to buy additional quantities without further negotiations.

Belgium and Germany rely on MIKRON, a binocular night vision goggle with two 16 mm image intensifier tubes and an integrated infra-red illuminator. The device can be used hand-held or helmet mounted. Both channels can be used separately or together. All channels can be flipped up or flipped side-ways individually. MIKRON is powered by a single AA type battery but it can also be used in combination with an external power pack for even longer missions. MIKRON was developed by market leader THEON SENSORS S.A. The increase in night vision capability for both programme participating States is critical in providing advanced equipment for their dismounted, airmobile and air assault soldiers as well as drivers of military vehicles. Recent conflicts underline the necessity of the ability to conduct missions at night.

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MIKRON binocular night vision goggle
MIKRON binocular night vision goggle. (Photo by MIKRON)

In July 2022 a first contract amendment had been signed by OCCAR, executing an option of the supply of additional 20,000 MIKRON Night Vision Goggles to the German Armed Forces while at the same time the delivery schedule was accelerated in light of the changed geopolitical situation.The total quantity of 29,550 NVGs resulting from the base contract and the first amendment is planned to be concluded in the 3rd quarter of 2024. The base contract, which had been signed by OCCAR in July 2021 featured 4,500 night vision goggles for Belgium and 5,000 for Germany. This contract has been fulfilled already. In light of the contract signature of the base contract, HENSOLDT optronics and THEON SENSORS had found a joint venture named HENSOLDT THEON NightVision GmbH in Wetzlar, Germany in June 2022. Following a transfer of technology from Athens to Wetzlar the production was increased swiftly. The combined production capacity of THEON’s headquarters in Athens and HENSOLDT THEON NightVision in Wetzlar facilitates large-scale production which is crucial for delivering such quantities in short time.

Christian Hadjminas, President of THEON said: “The award of this newly signed second amendment underscores that the two customer nations rely on the superior quality of the night vision goggle and the professional and reliable execution of the deliveries. The progress of the program with such an ambitious timetable is astonishing and is the result of efforts of all partners.”

MIKRON binocular night vision goggle
MIKRON binocular night vision goggle. (Photo by MIKRON)

THEON INTERNATIONAL PLC is the parent company of THEON international group, a leading manufacturer of Night Vision and Thermal Imaging systems for defence and security applications with a global footprint. THEON Group started its operations in 1997 from Greece, playing a leading role in the industry. Through this network of companies, offices and facilities around the world, THEON Group has more than 150,000 systems in service with Armed and Special Forces in 68 countries around the world.

HENSOLDT is a leading company in the European defence industry with global reach. Based in Taufkirchen near Munich, the company develops complete sensor solutions for defence and security applications. As a technology leader, HENSOLDT drives the development of defence electronics and optronics and is continuously expanding its portfolio based on innovative approaches to data management, robotics and cyber security.

OCCAR (Organisation Conjointe de Coopération en matière d’Armement / Organisation for Joint Armament Co-operation) is an international organisation whose core-business is the through life management of complex, cooperative defence equipment programmes. The organisation was established by means of the OCCAR Convention which is equivalent to an international treaty. The Convention was signed in 1998 and entered into force in 2001.The current OCCAR Member States are: Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom.

MIKRON binocular night vision goggle
MIKRON binocular night vision goggle. (Photo by MIKRON)

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