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22 Jul 02. Larry Johnson, Managing Director of General Dynamics (UK) Ltd told BATTLESPACE at Farnborough that “We are on track and going steady to meet the required in service date for BOWMAN.”

He announced that the U.K. MoD had approved BOWMAN Milestone 24, Initial Integration Complete, a Tier 1 milestone. Approval of this milestone acknowledges that the company has achieved the required level of maturity in the various BOWMAN sub-systems to enable Initial Operating Capability systems integration in October 2002.

He said that the company had achieved a great deal in the two years since the sudden cancellation of BOWMAN during Farnborough 2000 and in less than a year since the announcement that his company had won the contract.

“Our progress sin implementing the BOWMAN solution proposed by General Dynamics proves that the incremental upgrade of the Canadian Iris solution was the way forward to enable the U.K. to achieve the required ISD milestones.

The production of the LAS has started I n Hastings and Ottawa to allow the swift introduction into service. Already 250 engineers are working on the system that will be transferred to the new purpose-built Oakdale high-tech facility in South Wales that will be opened by Geoff Hoon M.P. on November 7th.

GD has 37 sub-contractors working on BOWMAN. Johnson announced that ITT and Harris were finalising discussions to establish a joint manufacturing plant for radios in Basingstoke. He also announced that Paravant had been awarded a contract to supply 800 Management Terminal systems and DRS is believed to be close to winning a contract for systems interfaces.

For the future vision of the UK’s ‘Network Enabled’ capability, Johnson sees the way forward as a development of the existing BOWMAN system to enable the bandwidth requirements for increased data, which would be provided by a Gigabit Ethernet with a separate video bus, and more data radios. This would cost £1bn over 20 years and could well be managed within existing budgets if the U.K. retained this growth path. GD has already finished design reviews for 6 out of the 60 vehicle fits.

GD is on track for a July 3rd 2003 IOC that would include delivery of all of the LAS, VHF, HF secure voice and data systems, Situational Awareness using the BSAM software and the crypto.

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