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26 Aug 02. Lockheed Martin, Mitsubishi Electric Corporation, SAMPA Kogyo K.K. and Mitsubishi Corporation have formed a joint venture company that will serve the emerging combat system engineering and lifetime support requirements of the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Forces (JMSDF).

The joint venture company, MLS Corporation, represents a full service partnership arrangement between industry and government, and leverages Japanese and U.S. industry expertise in life cycle support and integration services to benefit the JMSDF.

MLS Corporation products will include engineering support and testing of complex electronics equipment, logistics services, training, commercial-off- the-shelf (COTS) configuration management and application program maintenance and upgrades. The introduction of COTS technology into the defense market has resulted in the need for more efficient support models throughout a system’s lifecycle. Through the MLS partnership, Lockheed Martin will transfer its proven models to Japan for application across JMSDF surface ship programs.

The Lockheed Martin business unit that will be part of the joint venture is Lockheed Martin Surface Systems in Moorestown, N.J. Lockheed Martin Surface Systems is the U.S. Navy’s combat system engineering agent responsible for the design, integration and production of the Aegis Weapon System. Aegis-equipped ships are the U.S. Navy’s primary surface combatants under construction today and will remain its principal surface combatant well into the 21st century.

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