The Seasparrow/Stalker EO system is a key threat-detection component of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization’s (NATO) Seasparrow Missile System. The Seasparrow Mk6 EO camera was originally designed by Ball as a low light level camera system used to conduct search, surveillance, target identification, fire control and navigational guidance needed for surface-to-air missile defense.
Today, the Ball-engineered Stalker technology upgrade has significantly enhanced the Navy’s ability to detect, classify, identify and determine hostile intent of potential threats to its fleet of large-deck ships. This includes characterizing the intent of small boats and other surface contacts at a greater distance, giving ships additional time to respond.
Ball developed and tested Stalker, a Long-Range Electro-Optical infrared Sensor System (LREOSS) for use on large deck ships. Stalker uses visible and mid-wave infrared cameras to provide imagery in day and night conditions.
The Stalker system dramatically improves ship visual situational awareness, enabling ship crews to characterize the location and intent of small boats as well as flotsam, fishing boats and other watercraft.
Ball was recently awarded a contract for production, test and installation of Stalker systems. These include two configurations, a Director Mount model for ships equipped with the Seasparrow RADAR Director, and an Independent Mount for ships without the Director.
The Stalker program is the result of close collaboration between the Navy user community, the Navy program office and Ball Aerospace to fill an urgent need for long-range electro-optical systems on large deck ships. Since 2008, Ball’s Stalker sensor systems have been installed on multiple ships in the Navy’s fleet. These sensor systems have logged more than 150,000 hours of service for more than 25 operational deployments.
Ball has more than 40 years of experience designing and producing robust military sensors, providing a variety of full MIL-Spec and derivative Electro Optical systems available to meet military, paramilitary, and other specialized mission requirements.