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26 Sep 13. Situational awareness will be significantly improved for the British Army following the development of a new battlefield geospatial intelligence system from Team SOCRATES, an industrial group led by Lockheed Martin UK Information Systems and Global Solutions (IS&GS) and including Marshall Land Systems. The team has developed a coherent set of deployable GEOINT capabilities and services under the Field Deployable GEOINT (FDG) programme, which will be provided to the UK’s Joint Force Intelligence Group (JFIG). Marshall Land Systems has been responsible for the design, manufacture, fit out and integrated logistics for the 11 shelters fitted onto MOWAG Duro II 6X6 vehicles, which provide a two person tactical working environment and form the Tactical Information and Geospatial Analysis System (TIGAS). Marshall has also delivered three deployable shelters, which are used as the Tactical Map Deployment Point (TMDP) and also staffed by two people.
“This UK designed and built system elevates the collection, dissemination and effectiveness of GEOINT on the battlefield to a new level,” said Ray Cutting, Director of Marshall Land Systems, adding “We are delighted to have worked as part of Team SOCRATES under the management of Lockheed Martin to deliver this system which will provide a real added benefit for commanders in the field. The interest which is also being shown in the export market is very encouraging.”
FDG provides soldiers with field deployable GEOINT exploitation and map production capabilities to support strategic and tactical level operations. It will enable commanders to dynamically and rapidly brief and equip their frontline troops for operations with up-to-date, customised and digital GEOINT.mThe technology consolidates, enhances and extends existing battlefield GEOINT capabilities and integrates digital geoservers that were initially introduced under Urgent Operational Requirements (UORs) to support recent operations. Team SOCRATES comprises Lockheed Martin UK as prime and overall systems integrator responsible for hardware and software integration; Marshall Land Systems (container design and manufacture, plus integrated logistic support); SCISYS (software and integration); Atica Consulting (security and communications); KNK (concepts and doctrine); Polaris Consulting (whole life cost modelling) and Safety Assurance Services (safety and environmental work).
20 Sep 13. This past spring, the US Marine Corps quietly asked some well-known names in the defense industry to start working on six-month trade studies that would help define requirements for its Amphibious Combat Vehicle (ACV), the follow-on to its $3bn Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle (EFV) failure. The trade studies were recently extended by another six months, Defense News has learned, as the Corps struggles to replace its 40-year-old Amphibious Assault Vehicle (AAV) with a cost-effective, speedier alternative. The Corps is being exceedingly careful about the ACV for several reasons, not the least of which is the infamous flame-out of its EFV, which was cancelled in 2011 after chewing through $3bn in development costs. There is also the fact that budgets in coming years won’t be what they were during the first decade of this young century.
“I’m only going to get one bite at this apple — I don’t want to mess this up,” Marine Corps Commandant Gen. Jim Amos told reporters in June in a direct nod to the limited patience that Congress and Pentagon budget makers now have for programs that eat up too much time and money. Under current, pre-sequester plans, the Marines say they want the ACV to enter service between fiscal 2020 and 2022, with the Corps acquiring 573 of the amtracs. Since trade studies are ongoi