31 Aug 05. Atkins Defence and the Ministry of Defence announced the award to Lockheed Martin UK AND Thales Teams for the design, integration and demonstration of the Future Rapid Effect System (FRES) Electronic Architecture (EA) Technology Demonstrator Programme (TDP). Delivery is planned for the end of 2006. Key objectives of this contract are risk reduction, demonstration of the candidate architecture and validation of the requirement in preparation for the Demonstration and Manufacture Phase of the programme.
Lord Drayson said: “This is another positive step for the FRES programme. These contracts are part of a series of risk reduction activities to inform decisions on technologies that are feasible for FRES, ensuring we deliver first class equipment for our armed forces at the best value for the British taxpayer. There will be more TDPs to follow.”
The Lockheed Martin solution will look at how FRES could be integrated within the MOD’s network enabled communications system providing enhanced Command and Control, Communications and Intelligence, local situational awareness, target acquisition and precision engagement, survivability and mobility. The Electronic Architecture will integrate with the BOWMAN communications system and the Bowman Combat Infrastructure and Platform Battlefield Information Systems Application (BCIP) programme, providing seamless communications with all combat, combat support and combat service support systems. A sophisticated Health & Usage Monitoring System (HUMS) will be a key element to reduce the logistical footprint, increase availability and ensure that the whole life cost for the FRES system is tightly controlled.
“We are grateful to our strong UK team for their continuous cooperative efforts and hard work and for Atkins Defence and the FRES IPT for recognizing Lockheed Martin UK’s ability and commitment to the FRES programme. The steps we have taken for the FRES TDP will ensure a coherent technical approach and provides avenues for incremental technology insertion for the integration of sub-systems for the IOC (Initial Operating Capability) and later FOC (Full Operating Capability) roles”, said Gary Balthrop, Lockheed Martin FRES Programme Director.
The FRES EA TDP effort, led by Lockheed Martin is supported by substantial contributions from UK companies including Ultra Electronics, Smiths Aerospace, SciSys, PA Consulting and Cranfield University (Team ISIS). Lockheed Martin was one of two companies’ downselected for the Electronic Architecture TDP effort which will span a period of approximately 18 months.
“Lockheed Martin’s desire is to provide the customer with confidence and trust in our ability to conduct an objective and open assessment of potential architectures independent of any particular platform. We have focused our efforts as a UK team to adopt a sound analytical approach towards risk reduction resulting in a fully compliant definition of the FRES Electronic Architecture. Our architecture will be suitable for all vehicle variants and includes through-life capability management” said Bob Nager, Managing Director, Lockheed Martin UK, Missiles & Fire Control.
“Identifying viable architectural concepts and integrating them into complex land warfare systems and platforms is our greatest strength”, said Ian Stopps, Chief Executive, Lockheed Martin UK. “Our access to related UK technologies and knowledge derived from TRACER and other relevant programmes, underpins our confidence in executing the FRES Electronic Architecture TDP successfully.”
As part of the consortium led by Lockheed Martin, UK technology company SciSys is to play a substantial role in the design, integration and demonstration of the Electronic Architecture concept for FRES, one of the MoD’s and British Army’s highest profile projects.
“We are delighted to be part of the team that has been awarded this key contract on one of this generation’s most important defence programmes.