Defense giant Lockheed Martin and the U.S. Army have established a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) to improve system connectivity for better Beyond Line of Sight (BLOS) targeting, and to demonstrate “space-enabled defense systems.” The stated objective is for Lockheed and the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command’s Aviation and Missile Center (AvMC) “to identify and develop concepts of operations for linking ground-based platforms to the space domain.”
The collaborative work will be centered at AvMC’s Redstone Arsenal System Integration Lab (SIL) in Alabama, where integration, testing, and analysis tools will support prototyping efforts. SIL’s advanced modeling and simulation tool suite will help the team accelerate development of prototypes and align technical resources between U.S. government agencies and industry.
Among the CRADA’s planned projects will be efforts at improving satellite communications (SATCOM) with defense systems; identifying overlapping capabilities that can enhance connectivity; looking for capability gaps; conducting hardware-in-the-loop tests; testing the connectivity between platforms at various speeds; and exploring ancillary use of communications systems.
According to John Schierling, Lockheed Martin director for Tactical Space Programs, “Our collaboration with AvMC will assist in developing a more effective, survivable, and affordable battlefield-connected 21st century security technology for our government customers and international allies by connecting platforms with space assets, helping deter future threats.”