15 May 03. General Atomics Aeronautical Systems,Inc., has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Boeing that will allow the two companies to discuss areas of cooperation in the areas of unmanned systems, network-centric operations and other large-scale systems integration efforts.
The initial area of cooperation under the MOU will involve integrating the command and control architecture for General Atomics Aeronautical Systems’ Predator unmanned aircraft system into both the E-3 Airborne Warning and Control System (AWACS) and the AH-64 Apache helicopter platforms. The ultimate goal is to “fuse” the disparate systems, and in turn increase connectivity and interoperability between manned and unmanned aircraft.
“This MOU constitutes a step forward in strategic planning, allowing each company a vehicle through which to communicate on potential business opportunities. Establishment of a working relationship with Boeing and other leading companies could have significant benefits for the customer which is our ultimate goal. Interoperability between manned and unmanned aircraft systems will be key to making network centric a successful concept for the military,” stated Mr. Thomas J. Cassidy, Jr., President and Chief Executive Officer of General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc.
“This agreement provides two of the aerospace industry’s technology leaders with an opportunity to pool their talents and play an even stronger role in the fields of unmanned systems and network-centric operations, which are so important to the transformation of the military,” said Mike Heinz, Vice President and General Manager, Deputy of Integrated Defense Advanced Systems(IDeAS) which encompasses Unmanned Systems. “We plan to rapidly develop And provide new technologies and system-of-system solutions to our customers
that will meet their evolving needs with currently fielded and developing systems, and lead to major increases in operational effectiveness.”
General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. and Boeing will also consider
working together to identify, develop and capture specific new business
opportunities. The agreement also allows the companies to share relevant
business development strategies and information to help anticipate =
evolving customer needs.