DENVER, Colo., 26 June 2012. The Italian Air Ministry of Defense has signed a use agreement with Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] for an Airborne Multi-Intelligence Laboratory (AML). The agreement has Lockheed Martin provide the AML aircraft, three ground intelligence processing systems as well as flight crew and maintenance personnel for the plane. The agreement is for one year, with an option to extend to two years.
The AML is a Gulfstream III business jet that has been transformed into a flying test bed to expedite the testing and fielding of C4ISR capabilities. The AML is used to validate how sensors and processors interact and is equipped with many different systems, including signals intelligence arrays and forward-looking infrared radar (FLIR), as well as wideband and narrowband data-links.
Under the agreement, the Italian Air Force will use the AML, with its suite of intelligence computing capabilities, in a live operational environment for the next year. Due to the AML's open architecture and configurable physical structure, the Italian Air Force can integrate additional C4ISR components as well. This helps facilitate the integration of the AML with existing sovereign ground architectures while maintaining interoperability during NATO or coalition engagements.
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During the course of the agreement, Lockheed Martin and the Italian Air Force will work together on the overall system requirements as well as hone the operational implementation concepts. Lockheed Martin’s AML will fly in support of a wide range of missions to include training, concept of operations development and ISR operations. Lockheed Martin will also maintain the aircraft and AML ground stations.
To meet the Italian Air Force’s needs, Lockheed Martin has assembled a team with experience across the airborne ISR spectrum, including communications; multiple sensors; as well as a multi-purpose platform. Lockheed Martin’s AML team includes L-3 Communications Systems-West, Rockwell Collins, FLIR Government Systems and DRS.
Lockheed Martin’s AML spurred the introduction of Lockheed Martin’s Dragon family of ISR configurations last year. The Dragon configurations offer a way for customers to match mission requirements and budget to their specific sensor, communications and airframe needs.