The US Army has awarded Northrop Grumman a US$713 million contract for the production of Integrated Air and Missile Defence (IAMD) Battle Command System (IBCS) for the first phase of Poland’s WISŁA air and missile defence program.
“Poland is taking a leadership role in today’s complex threat environment by selecting IBCS over legacy stove-piped systems that were designed decades ago for a much different threat profile," Dan Verwiel, vice president and general manager for missile defence and protective systems, Northrop Grumman, said. “Through the acquisition of IBCS, Poland will be in line with the US Army’s future direction. Poland will have the flexibility to consider any radar and any interceptor, optimize sensor and effector integration and keep pace with an evolving threat.”
Under this foreign military sales contract for WISŁA, Northrop Grumman will manufacture IBCS engagement operations centers and integrated fire control network relays and deliver IBCS net-enabled command and control for four firing units. The IBCS engagement operations centers will be integrated with IBCS battle management software. IBCS engagement operations centers and network relays will be transported by Polish Jelcz vehicles.
“Northrop Grumman continues to work closely with the Polish Ministry of National Defense and Polish industry toward a comprehensive offset program that meets the program goals and requirements. We look forward to continued collaboration and partnership with PGZ and its consortium of companies on this and future phases of the WISŁA program,” Tarik Reyes, vice president, business development, missile defense and protective systems, Northrop Grumman, said.
In March 2018, Poland signed a Letter of Offer and Acceptance with the US government to purchase IBCS and became the first international partner country to acquire this advanced capability.
IBCS replaces legacy stove-piped systems with a net-centric approach, integrating disparate radars and weapons to construct a far more effective IAMD enterprise. IBCS delivers a single integrated air picture and broadens surveillance and protection areas. An open systems architecture allows IBCS to incorporate current and future sensors and weapon systems and creates interoperability with joint C2 and the ballistic missile defense system.
Northrop Grumman is in the running for Australia's Air 6500, which will see the development and integration of a Joint Battle Management System (JBMS) that will interconnect the many disparate platforms, systems and sensors across the air, land, sea, space, electromagnetic and cyber domains into a collaborative environment that provides shared situational awareness of the battlespace.
Chief of Air Force AIRMSHL Leo Davies recently updated ADM on the delay to the program.
"Most of your readers will have seen at some point on a PowerPoint the lightning bolt picture – aeroplanes, ships, soldiers, tanks, lightning bolts everywhere, that’s Air 6500," AIRMSHL Davies said. "We had that picture for the last 10 years, but the lightning bolts didn’t exist. We want to build the system that has the connectivity and integration which answers the same question about the gateway.
"The gateway experiments were successful, they proved that we need to be connected but we don’t want to go down a path of needing a gateway, we want to have a by-design function."