L-3 Communications Warrior Systems Applied Optics Center (AOC) has a successful track record of exceeding customer expectations in the optical coatings and products industry dating to its roots in the 1960s and the Optical Electronics Corporation (OEC). By the 1970s, OEC had expanded its operations and relocated to new facilities in the northern part of Dallas, Texas. Capabilities included optics fabrication, thin-film coatings, metal machining, optical bonding and system assembly. OEC became a major supplier of periscopes and numerous optical devices for US military tanks and ground vehicles.
Over the years, OEC was acquired and merged several times into other aerospace and defense businesses. With each change, the structure, core competencies and experience base strengthened. In 1992, Litton purchased the remnants of OEC and integrated them with its electro-optical business in Tempe, AZ into Electro-Optical Systems (EOS). The optical fabrication, coating and assembly operations were consolidated in 1997 as the Applied Optics Center in Dallas, Texas.
In 2000, EOS including AOC became part of Northrop Grumman Corporation (NGC) as part of the acquisition of Litton Industries. L-3 Corporation purchased EOS including AOC in 2008. After acquisition of Insight Technologies in 2010, L-3 Communications created the Warrior Systems division that is comprised of five business units:
- Insight Technologies, Londonderry, New Hampshire
- EO-Tech, Ann Arbor, Michigan
- Electron Tube Operations, Tempe, Arizona & Huntsville, AL
- Infrared Products, Garland, Texas & Dallas, Texas
- Applied Optics Center, Dallas, Texas
Since 1997, AOC has significantly expanded its operations with the commissioning of three more 2-meter Vapor Deposition chambers in addition to the existing 2-meter chambers, 1-meter chambers and related equipment. AOC is the primary supplier to the US Army of M22 binoculars, M24 binoculars, M144 spotting scopes, in addition to providing specialized windows for tanks/armored vehicles and laser filter units. AOC has a vast knowledge base in optics fabrication, thin-film coatings, and optical bonding and assembly with numerous personnel having more than thirty years of experience in these areas.